diet workplace wellness

Diet, Exercise Head List of Lifestyle Interventions to Help Manage Diabetes

Yesterday we reported on the need that exists for workplace wellness programs to focus on diabetes lifestyle interventions.

We noted that MedPage Today reports that “fewer than half of U.S. adults with type 2 diabetes (T2D) are meeting recommended guidelines for preventing cardiovascular disease (CVD). ”The information comes from a study published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology titled “Primary Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease in Diabetes Mellitus.”

The authors’ important conclusion: “Appropriate lifestyle and CVD risk factor management has the potential to significantly reduce the burden of CVD among patients with T2D.”

But what might those lifestyle changes include? According to MedPage Today, key highlights include many changes that are part of a well-run workplace wellness program:

Diet. “The PREDIMED trial demonstrated a 30% reduction in the primary composite outcome of cardiovascular death, MI, or stroke with the Mediterranean diet compared with a control diet. Results for patients with T2D were similar to the main group, suggesting that a Mediterranean diet may prevent cardiovascular events in patients with T2D. Guidelines from the ADA recommend the Mediterranean diet, as well as increased fruit, vegetable, and whole grain consumption and decreased intake of saturated fat.”

Weight Management. “Many patients with T2D have difficulty losing weight with lifestyle interventions alone. Current AHA, ACC, and Obesity Society guidelines recommend pharmacotherapy for weight loss among individuals with a body-mass index (BMI) of 25 to 30 with additional risk factors for CVD, including T2D or pre-diabetes, or a BMI higher than 30 regardless of comorbidities.”

Exercise. “Experts agree and guidelines recommend 30 minutes of moderate exercise five days per week.”

Smoking Cessation. “Although some patients may gain weight in the period after smoking cessation, recent research indicates this weight gain does not significantly attenuate the substantial CVD benefit from smoking cessation.”