It was a scratchy throat that wouldn’t clear up that sent Christopher Green to the doctor.
He was surprised, though, when he was told that instead of an allergy or virus of some kind that he had type 2 diabetes.
“I know that it runs in the family but previous doctors all said I was in good shape, just needed to shed a few pounds and watch cholesterol, the normal stuff,” said Green, who was diagnosed last year.
Fortunately for Green, now 28, who holds down a full-time job as consumer security tech in Clearwater, Florida, and attends classes full time at Eckerd College in St. Petersburg, he is controlling his diabetes with diet and exercise.
“As much as possible, I take a bike to work. I walk around the office and I’m joining a gym” located near his office that offers a discount to company employees.
Green said he takes medication daily for high blood pressure and cholesterol, is cutting back on fast food, packs meals for school and work, keeps protein bars in his backpack in case of emergency, eats smaller portions and uses cookbooks that focus on meals for diabetics – including gluten-free recipes.
He also checks his blood sugar levels twice a day. His health insurance pays for the glucose meter and strips.
“It’s a challenge, but you’ve got to do it.”
Green’s doctor told him if he gets his weight down, exercises regularly and maintains a healthy diet, he may well be able to get off medication entirely.
Being alert to changes in his health and consulting with his physician made a big difference for Green.
The American Diabetes Association wants more Americans, especially black Americans, to become more aware of how to prevent and control the disease.
The association’s Alert Day, which is held every fourth Tuesday in March, is a one-day “wake-up call” asking the public to take the Diabetes Risk Test to find out if they are at risk for developing type 2 diabetes.
According to the Diabetes Association, nearly 26 million children and adults in the U.S. have the disease and nearly 7 million of them don’t know it. In addition, another 79 million, or one in three American adults, have pre-diabetes, which puts them at high risk for developing type 2 diabetes.
Diagnosis comes late to many people, as much as 7 to 10 years after the onset of the disease, usually after a health crisis, like a stroke, a diagnosis of heart disease or loss of vision.
People at high risk include those who are overweight, live a sedentary lifestyle and are over the age of 45. African Americans, Latinos, Native Americans, Asian Americans, Pacific Islanders, and people who have a family history of the disease also are at an increased risk for type 2 diabetes.
Research has shown, however, that diabetes can be prevented by losing as little as 7 percent of their body weight (i.e., 15 pounds for someone who weighs 200 pounds), eating better and exercising just 30 minutes a day, five days a week.
“You just make yourself do it,” Green said about having the tools at your disposal to improve your health. “You can have it all, but if you don’t use it, there’s a price to pay.”
Also On Black America Web:
This Week’s Celebrity Instagrams (10/15-10/21)
31 photos Launch gallery
1. Just a NY girl with BIG dreams....
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2. HAPPY CHILDREN=QUALITY PARENTING. We don't always see eye to eye on everything and that's normal. We're human beings. But we come together and do it right for what's important, the kids. We are not enemies, we are parents. And we are parents 1st. S/O to @monyettashaw for making Mason's bday memorable. S/O to @itscrystalsmith at home taking care of our other lil' Prince. ❤️❤️❤️ THIS IS WHAT CO-PARENTING LOOKS LIKE. #Blessed #Happy #AboveTheDrama #BiggerThanUs
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3. So happy to finally be able to share with you all that I’m the new Global Brand Ambassador for @Revlon! Follow my day on RevlonSnaps. Yay! Choose Love, Everybody! #RevlonXCiara #chooselove #ad
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4. Glam on point!!!@makeupbymotoko & @shaylinjoneshair #easybreezy @lifetimetv #beachesmovie #january2017 😘
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5. ✨True love ✨📸: @jessiemarrerophotography
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7. Today was not easy..but by the grace of God we all got through it. Words cannot express our gratitude for all of your Prayers, Positive thoughts and Support for us throughout the years. Tommy will be missed but most certainly never forgotten...And PLEASE don't ask "Where's Martin?.." he was there too...just not in this picture. Lol! God bless you all.. #LoveConquersAll #MartinShow
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9. West coast get ready for #RockyHorror. I will be live tweeting again. #letsdothetimewarpagain
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10. #THEKEYS pre order yours now ... Available everywhere #NOV22 #WeTheBest 🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑
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11. We about to ROCK at #KCABlackBall!! All for our life-changing effort to end 🌎 AIDS.
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12. Today's #SNAPJACK is brought to you by @yazzthegreatest 😂😂😂💋💋💋
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13. Damn girl you kinda old to be headed to the Go Go. You coming in at the age they leaving. LMAO
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14. Daddy daycare B-Boxin with @acewellstucker @shopraisingace
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15. #FBF Naviyd & URV "LIL MONSTERS"
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16. HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ONE OF THE BIGGEST LEGENDS IN OUR HIPHOP HISTORY! @snoopdogg CONTINUED BLESSING AND LOVE FAMILY!!!!! REAL OG!
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17. Thank you for a beautiful night VSU! Let's do it again! #HOMECOMING
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18. Had a great time this morning with my familia Erica, Griff & Truth!!
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19. Check out my interview on @essence facebook live. #inmyownwords #nycpromo #day2
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20. #She💋 #tbt #TheCoveAtTheAtlantis #DawgPawsAndAll
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21. Bae #retailtherapy
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22. Why me and @coryhardrict got the same pose... and notee... new mouth #naked
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23. When my husband is my personal 'hype-man'! it kills me every time! 💜😂 #WHATNOW #lostfiles📷
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24. Diggy Simmons
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25. Hand full of @jacquieaiche 💙💎💍 @esnail_la 💅🏾
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26. SuperSoulers! You can watch my interview with Carl Lentz live from my Facebook page, tomorrow at 11a ET| 8a PT. #SuperSoulSunday
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27. 💋 .. When the friendship is easy like Sunday morning. ☀️
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28. Sunday mornings are the best........... hugs and cuddles with my angel
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29. #huggar16 #hellohuggars
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30. My gym is everywhere!.. #RnBMoney #TheGeneral 📸: @twelvepastseven
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31. Nothing I would rather be doing... Rocko setting up our movie, Romelō working on a puzzle & Laiyah singing and sharing all she's learning at school... I'm so grateful for the joy they've brought into my life ... Praying for peace , joy & love in the home of EVERY family ♥️ #HeadScarfPJSunday LOL 😂
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