By Kathryn Rice

The Maryville Host and Pride Lions are joining with Debra Hull, RN and Mosaic diabetes educator, to bring forth the importance of diabetes prevention and management.

Hull and the Lions members have created the Lions Diabetes Champions program to help get the word out.

According to the CDC, 38 percent of adults in the US have pre-diabetes. Lifestyle changes are the number one way a person can reduce the risk of pre-diabetes advancing into type 2 diabetes. The issue is 80 percent of people with pre-diabetes don’t even know they have it.

“Eighteen Lions Club members from the Pride and Host Lions Clubs in Maryville have stepped up to fight this pandemic by becoming ‘Lions Diabetes Champions’ for our community,” Hull said. “This entails members attending a three-hour class to learn about diabetes and its prevention, which is provided by the Maryville Mosaic Diabetes Education Department. Members will also receive training on the use of a glucometer by Bill Calhoon, the Lions district diabetes chairperson.

“Once armed with knowledge and skill, Lions will hit the pavement to offer to champion a local business. For interested businesses, the Lion Diabetes Champions will provide ‘Diabetes Awareness Days” to provide information about diabetes and its prevention as well as blood glucose screening for employees and/or customers.”

The Lions members learned people with pre-diabetes often don’t take the diagnosis seriously. Hull is recommending people with pre-diabetes take the class and start to take preventative measures of diet and exercise to keep the disease from progressing into diabetes.

For persons with diabetes, pre-diabetes, or for anyone who simply wants a healthier body by learning about healthy nutrition, exercise, weight loss and behavior change, Maryville’s Mosaic Diabetes Education Department offers a class to meet this need. If interested in taking the diabetes class or diabetes prevention class, or for questions about the Lions Diabetes Champion project, contact Hull, diabetes educator at Mosaic at 660.562.7966.