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ASU will host its fourth Focused Forum: ‘Diabetes’

October 12, 2006

Arizona State University will host its fourth Focused Forum featuring an in depth discussion on diabetes, a chronic condition affecting millions of American today. The forum is an educational session designed to help diabetics and their families understand the basic risk factors associated with diabetes and to discover ways to manage the disease. It is presented by ASU’s Gerontology program.

The program begins at 10 a.m., Saturday, Nov. 4, in the CLCC Lecture Hall, at ASU’s West campus, 4701 W. Thunderbird Road, Phoenix. The forum features two informational sessions: Managing Diabetes, which starts at 10 a.m.; and What’s to Eat? beginning at 11:15 a.m. The event is open to the public, and a $5 fee is required at the door.

“The percentage of people suffering from diabetes is increasing rapidly, and many medical authorities refer to it as an epidemic,” said Kathleen Waldron, interim director of the Gerontology program, in the College of Human Serves at ASU’s West campus. “People need to take responsibility for their own treatment, and that starts with understanding what they are dealing with.”

Current treatment of diabetes requires substantial involvement on the part of the patient. One of the most important things a diabetic can do is to learn more about the disease and how to prevent its complications.

The first session features Jean Merkel, who will talk about nutritional goals, the “diabetic-diet,” managing protein, carbohydrate and fat consumption; and the importance of calorie monitoring. In What’s to Eat? Lynne Boudreaux discusses the basic facts and risk factors of diabetes, how the different types are diagnosed, how to properly monitor blood sugar, and ways to avoid long-term complications.

Both Merkel and Boudreaux are registered dietitians and considered experts in diabetes education. They are associated with the diabetes and nutrition program at CIGNA Medical Group.