Healthcare organizations across Central Oregon are coming together to improve the health and well-being of our neighbors, friends and family members that suffer from Type 2 Diabetes. High Lakes in Sisters, La Pine Community Health Center, Mosaic Medical, and St. Charles are now offering a new program called Eat for Life.
According to the latest regional assessment by the Central Oregon Health Council 9.1% of adults in Oregon now have diabetes, , doubling rates from just 20 years ago (Oregon Health Authority, 2015). Disparities also exist between our communities in diabetes prevalence with 13% of Crook County residents, 8% of Deschutes County residents and 11% of Jefferson County diagnosed with diabetes.
For these adults, a key element of diabetes control is self-management (diet and exercise). Eat for life is designed to support patients with uncontrolled Type 2 Diabetes. The four month program provides education and peer support about the importance of including more vegetables as part of a balanced diet to control diabetes. Each participant receives one-on-one goal setting with a nutritionist, nurse or provider, attends cooking classes that focus on cooking healthier meals and receives a monthly stipend to a local Grocery Outlet or to Melvin’s in Sisters to purchase fresh and frozen vegetables.
“With the price of nutritious food increasing across Central Oregon, it is great to be part of a program that alleviates the cost of vegetables for those in our community who cannot afford them. We are actively improving the health of community and I couldn’t be prouder to be part of this unique program”, says Rhonda Bourgo, the owner of Grocery Outlet in Madras.
Eat for Life began this month across Central Oregon. Four groups in each community are planned for the next two years. The program aims to help patients take control of their diabetes to live their healthiest life!