Diabetes and Nutrition Education Center
Children and adults who are new to diabetes or need some extra assistance can turn to the comprehensive diabetes management program offered at Mary Greeley Medical Center Diabetes and Nutrition Education Center.
Diabetes is a complex disease that must be constantly managed. Whether in the form of prediabetes, Type 1, Type 2, or gestational, management of blood sugar (glucose) levels is important. The Center’s compassionate and highly trained staff provides patients and the people who support them with the tools needed to live well with the disease.
Diabetes and Nutrition Education Center staff focus on helping patients achieve and maintain well-controlled blood sugar, gain disease management independence, and improve daily self-care. Those steps include:
- Blood sugar monitoring and achieving American Diabetes Association blood glucose goals
- Diabetes resource awareness, including new research and technology
- Diabetes Support Group
- Insulin options, and insulin administration and adjustment, as well as understanding of insulin action
- Mary Greeley Diabetes Support Group on Facebook
- Medical nutrition assessment and management, including carbohydrate counting
- Nutrition education
- Type 2 Diabetes and Prediabetes classes
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Compassionate Diabetes Experts
At the Mary Greeley Medical Center Diabetes and Nutrition Education Center, diabetes specialists, including registered nurses and registered dietitians, offer education and support with the goal of self-management and healthy lifestyles for people with diabetes. The center is under the medical direction of a board-certified endocrinologist. With a physician's referral, Medicare and most private insurance plans cover 10 hours of education for the first year, and two hours of follow-up education per year after the first year.
American Diabetes Association Certification
Mary Greeley Medical Center has earned and maintains certification from the American Diabetes Association and is licensed by the state of Iowa.
Types of Diabetes
Prediabetes is indicated when someone’s blood sugar level is higher than normal. Someone diagnosed with prediabetes can be at risk for Type 2 diabetes. There aren’t any exact causes, but people who are overweight, physically inactive, and have a family history of diabetes are more likely to get prediabetes, as are women who have had gestational diabetes. It is typically diagnosed with a blood test. In general, prediabetes is treated with weight loss, healthier eating, and increased activity, with the goal of normalizing blood sugar levels.
Type 1 Diabetes
Type 1 diabetes occurs when your pancreas stops making insulin, which means your body is unable to use or store sugar properly, leading to high blood sugar levels. This in turn can harm the eyes, heart, blood vessels, nerves, and kidneys. It can also pose risk for other complications. Type 1 diabetes can develop in children and adults. Family history may or may not be a risk factor. Symptoms may include:
- Excessive thirst, urination, and hunger
- Weight loss
- Blurry eyesight
While there is no cure, there are effective ways to manage Type 1 diabetes. Treatment includes managing blood sugar levels with blood sugar testing, insulin shots or an insulin pump, a healthy diet and exercise.
Type 2 Diabetes
When your body is unable to use insulin correctly (insulin resistance), or when your pancreas can’t make enough insulin on its own, you may be diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes. Type 2 diabetes can lead to problems with the eyes, heart, blood vessels, nerves, and kidneys. It can also increase the risk for other complications. People who are overweight, inactive, or have a family history of the disease may be more likely to have Type 2 diabetes. Symptoms of Type 2 diabetes may include:
- Excessive thirst, urination, and hunger
- Blurred vision
Type 2 diabetes is managed by the control of blood sugar levels. Management may include blood glucose testing, healthy eating, weight loss if recommended, exercise, and medicine if prescribed.
Gestational diabetes is diabetes diagnosed during pregnancy and affects approximately 10 percent of pregnant women. Most women who experience gestational diabetes will no longer have diabetes after giving birth. Risks for gestational diabetes include:
- Family history of diabetes
- Your own birth weight, if above nine pounds
- History of sugar in the urine
- Poor obstetric history
- Pregnancy in later childbearing years
Get Started Today
Request an appointment with the Diabetes and Nutrition Education Center, or contact the center at 515-956-2880.