Even though she must be watchful about what, how much, even when she eats, Ava Bush, 58, refuses to consider herself on a diet.
“I just tell myself that I’m being healthy. I’m doing what I must do to keep my body working as it should,” she says.
For Ava and thousands of other adults with diabetes, the monitoring must be constant and careful. It can be overwhelming if there is no support.
Ava’s boots-on-the-ground experience with diabetes made her the perfect candidate for serving as a facilitator for a national program OASIS offers called Better Choices, Better Health®—Diabetes. The program is offered regularly in San Antonio, St. Louis, Los Angeles and Indianapolis – where Ava is one of the workshop leaders.
Developed and tested at Stanford University, this free discussion-based workshop offers adults with Type 2 diabetes strategies for common challenges, including: understanding what to eat and how to make it enjoyable; monitoring and managing blood sugar; starting or maintaining an exercise program; communicating better with family, friends and medical team; and designing a personal self-management program.
Ava started out to help others, but has gained new insights for herself in the process.
“The material and the approach of this program are quite different than other programs,” says Ava. “The goal-setting guidance is especially helpful. I’ve seen several people come to the class almost having given up and literally light up when they leave six weeks later. They have confidence that they can manage.”
Oasis offers Better Choices, Better Health®—Diabetes in partnership with the National Council on Aging (NCOA) and with financial support from Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation.
The Impact of Better Choices, Better Health – Diabetes in 2014:
- 630 participants
- 76 facilitators trained