November is American Diabetes Month, and this year’s theme is “Eat Well, America!” Sounds simple, right? It’s not only an easy instruction, but it also shows how diet plays a major role in the fight against diabetes.
Before we speak on how to eat well, let’s take a brief look at how diabetes is affecting us, specifically. The American Diabetes Association reports that African Americans are almost twice as likely to have diabetes than non-Hispanic whites. How many of us have at least one person in our family history that has Diabetes, or as some of us may have heard it referred to as, “sugar”. Diabetes has been around so long, and we know so many people with it that we tend to forget how serious the disease is. Diabetes can lead to serious problems such as heart disease, kidney failure, and amputations. It can also cause day-to-day problems, such as pain in the extremities, slowed digestion and sexual dysfunction due to nerve ending damage.
Michelle Maxwell received her B.S. in dietetics and M.S. in Nutrition and Food Science from The Florida State University. Originally on a pre-med track, she switched into this field after realizing how big of a role nutrition played in health, especially in preventing disease. Michelle’s heart is in public health because she knows how much of an impact education has on health outcomes, and this is why her current passion lies in improving health outcomes in the African American community, especially among our women and children. Ms. Maxwell’s goal is to teach everyone how to make small changes that can lead to big results.