Fat Calorie Detectives

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PHOTO left to right: Kathleen Moneghan, PA-C & Tyler Stoliker, FNP-C provide an overview for the medical community about the NDPP

Fort Kent ~ Last year, Northern Maine Medical Center (NMMC) offered a nationally recognized program to its employees and family members in support of health and wellness. The program is one which was developed by the Center for Disease Control (CDC) as an effective workplace program and has proven to reduce health risks and improve the quality of life for American workers. The course offered is called the National Diabetes Prevention Program (NDPP) which is a structured course offered across the country. NMMC has announced that when the program is offered again this year, an invitation will be extended to the public to join the lifestyle change program. At the conclusion of last year’s program, nearly 80% of participants met or exceeded the goal of 7% weight reduction with an impressive collective loss of two hundred twenty seven pounds.

NDPP was created by the CDC for individuals who are at risk for developing diabetes. Eighty six million Americans have pre-diabetes, which is more than one out of three people. Pre-diabetes increases one’s risk for type two diabetes but can also lead to other chronic and serious medical conditions such as heart disease and stroke. Screening for diabetes risk factors includes: having a sibling or parent with diabetes, individuals age 65 or younger who get little or no daily exercise, over age 65, or a history of giving birth to a baby weighing more than nine pounds.

Tyler Stoliker, NMMC Family Nurse Practitioner and one of the two Lifestyle Coaches who teach the course said, “The Program is promoted as a lifestyle change and not a fad diet.” Each participant is asked to set personal goals in addition to the program goals. As part of the core curriculum covered, participants receive general education about pre diabetes, diabetes and related health risks. They also learn about fat grams and their relation to overall caloric intake.

Kathleen Moneghan, NMMC Physician Assistant and Lifestyle Coach said, “The Program raises awareness about what you put into your body.” She also said that the group dynamics of sharing amongst class participants makes a significant difference and contributes to individual success. Throughout the yearlong program, participants have the opportunity to share strategies for success as well as support and encourage one another when they have a relapse. As the program progresses, the importance of physical activity is incorporated into the program. NDPP recommends one hundred fifty minutes of exercise each week, combined with the nutrition component, in order to be successful. Classes are interactive and include opportunities to speak with a nutritionist, learn proper techniques for stretching muscles, work with restaurant menus and exchange recipes.

Sandra San Antonio, Director for NMMC’s Medical Practices said, “The focus of the program is for individuals to be successful so we are doing everything we can to remove any obstacles that could prevent people from participating.” Participants will be charged a nominal fee for the program which will then be refunded for those who complete the program. The initial information session will be held on May 3 at 6 pm in the Medical Library at NMMC. Anyone interested in learning more or registering for the Program are asked to contact their primary care provider.
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