One hundred and one people recently enrolled in the Fit ‘n’ Healthy out-patient education program at the Joslin Diabetes Center in Boston. The participants included people with type I and type 2 diabetes and people without diabetes.
The program is unique in that it promotes active participation in exercise, and teaches patients how to exercise correctly, overcome fears of obesity and exercise, and make healthy food choices with diabetes. Other education topics include counting fat grams, dining out with diabetes, and establishing realistic expectations. The program emphasizes overall health improvement rather than the number of pounds lost.
After 16 weeks, 66% of the 101 participants had completed the program successfully. Thirty-two percent of those had a HgbA1 improvement of 1% or greater, and 56% lost a 1/2 pound per week or more. There was also significant improvement in cholesterol levels in 37% of the patients.
According to the program report, “One-third of patients who lower fat intake and incorporate moderate exercise into their lifestyle improve lipid levels and/or glycemic control. A lowfat, high carbohydrate diet did not promote hypertriglyceridemia as is documented in recent studies. There was no correlation between pounds lost and HgbA1 improvement.”
The bottom line appears to be that you shouldn’t let your scale be the only determiner of your health.
This report was presented at the 22nd Annual Meeting and Educational Program of the AADE in Boston, August 1995.