LAWTON, OK (KSWO)- November is National Diabetes Awareness Month. To help educate kids about how to eat right and exercise, the Lawton Community Health Center is sending diabetes educators to elementary schools in the area to talk with 4th and 5th grade students. Whittier Elementary was the first.
Obesity is the leading cause of developing type 2 diabetes. Since obesity now affects 1 in 6 children in the country, health officials are trying to educate the youth about a healthy lifestyle.
"Statistically we are in the top 10 and it's just getting worse. We want to address this at the younger age so that hopefully we can stop things before they progress."
Jan Miller is a registered dietician and a certified diabetes educator. She says when she goes to schools she's trying to teach the kids the basics. Prevention is what she is focused on.
"To move more and watch their portions, and really limit the added sugars. There's lots of evidence that shows we as a society are consuming too much sugar."
Fourth and fifth-grade students at Whittier Elementary school learned about ways to live a healthy life.
Miller says screen time for a child should be no more than 2 hours a day whether it's TV's, tablets, or phones. She says get them up and moving. She also said it's very important to stay on top of your checkups.
"Keep your doctor's appointments. And be sure to talk and keep an open dialogue with your physician to make sure that you're doing all the things that you need to be doing to keep yourself from developing this devastating disease."
Miller says you can go to Diabetes.org to practice virtually filling your plate up with the right portion sizes and healthy options.