Monday, 29 February 2016

Unlocking the mystery behind type 2 diabetes

Unlocking the mystery behind type 2 diabetes

What is type 2 diabetes?

Type 2 diabetes is a disease caused when the body does not make enough insulin or when the body does not use the insulin properly. Insulin is a hormone that helps control the amount of sugar (or glucose) in the body.  In diabetes, this results in sugar building up in the blood instead of being used up as energy.
Think of insulin as the key that unlocks the cells doors to allow sugar in. When there are not enough keys, or, when the keys are not able to unlock the doors, some doors remain locked and the sugar stays outside.  

Are you at risk for type 2 diabetes?

Anyone who is over the age of 40 should be tested for diabetes every 3 years.
Anyone with one or more of these risk factors below should be screened more often:

• If you are a member of a certain ethnic backgrounds :

o Aboriginal
o Asian
o South Asian
o African
o Hispanic

• Genetics – having immediate family members with diabetes
• Being overweight especially when the excess weight is around the tummy
• Giving birth to a baby over 9lbs or had gestational diabetes while pregnant
• High blood pressure
• High cholesterol
• Pre-diabetes
• Certain medical conditions  (Polycystic Ovary Syndrome, obstructive sleep apnea)

What are the signs and symptoms of diabetes?

• Extreme thirst
• Frequent urination
• Weight change (gain or loss)
• Extreme fatigue or lack of energy
• Blurred vision
• Frequent or recurring infections
• Cuts and bruises that are slow to heal
• Tingling or numbness in hands and feet
• Trouble getting or keeping an erection

You’ve been diagnosed with Diabetes.  Now what?

Your family doctor may recommend you start a few lifestyle changes that could help to lower your blood sugar.  These may include:  increasing your level of physical activity, modifying your diet to include more fibre and less sugar, fat and salt, or starting medication.

Cherie deBoer is a Registered Nurse at the Leduc Beaumont Devon Primary Care Network.

The Leduc Beaumont Devon Primary Care Network has a has a team of healthcare professionals that help people living with various chronic conditions such as diabetes, pre-diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, obesity and other nutritional concerns. A smoking cessation program is also offered. Our team, which includes registered nurses, a registered psychologist and registered pharmacist, registered dietitians and an exercise specialist, works with patients to help them learn strategies to improve their ability to manage their health. You can access the team through a referral from your family doctor.

The PCN also offers workshops and classes that are free to the public, a referral is not needed. Check our website for upcoming classes that might interest you.

Friday, 19 February 2016

February is Heart Month - the PCN team is here to help you!

The PCN has a team of clinicians who assist those who want to start implementing lifestyle changes but are not sure where or how to start.

February is heart month and this may be a good time to review what your lifestyle is like and where you could possibly make some changes to avoid the onset of heart disease or to manage it if it already exists.

Some of the risk factors that can be changed or managed are:

- High blood pressure (hypertension)
- High blood cholesterol
- Diabetes
- Being overweight
- Excessive alcohol consumption
- Physical inactivity
- Smoking
- Stress

Changing even one of these risk factors will help to reduce the risk of heart disease.  The SMILE team at the PCN, along with your family doctor, are two very reliable resources where you can get help to get started.  The PCN clinicians are trained in specific areas of healthy living and can work with you on ways to get started and sustain these changes for life.

Visit our website at and click on the Programs and Services tab for more detailed information.

The PCN offers an Active Living class in April that will be taught by the Exercise Specialist. Get a fresh start to the spring and discover ways to increase your activity level and work through common barriers to getting started. A referral is not required; please call to register at 780-986-6624.

Also in the spring there is a new activity challenge starting up which anyone can take part in. Get Out Get Active (GOGA) can help improve your heart health with increased walking and activity and there are great prizes to be won while doing it. Refer to the website  for details on the upcoming GOGA challenge. Get the whole family involved in making healthy lifestyle changes for improved heart health for all!!

Corinne Cutler is an Exercise Specialist and member of the SMILE healthcare team at the Leduc Beaumont Devon Primary Care Network.
See you PCN doctor today and discuss a referral to the SMILE team at the PCN.

Wednesday, 10 February 2016

Leduc Cardiac Rehabilitation Program

Have you recently had a cardiac event? Is your doctor a member of our PCN? Ask for a referral to our Leduc Cardiac Rehabilitation Program.

For more information, talk to your PCN doctor or call our office at 780-986-6624.

Thursday, 4 February 2016

February is Heart Month

Today, heart disease and stroke take one life every 7 minutes and 90% of Canadians have at least one risk factor. Heart Month is the Heart and Stroke Foundation's key opportunity to reach millions of Canadians in February and alert them to the risks of heart disease and stroke. Learn more about Heart Month at the Heart and Stroke Foundation website.

Use the Heart and Stroke Risk Assessment tool to find out if you are at risk.

The Leduc Beaumont Devon Primary Care Network supports healthy heart education by offering the Heart Healthy class:

Monday, 1 February 2016

Winter Walk Day

February 3rd marks the 10th anniversary of Winter Walk Day!

This event encourages everyone to get outside for a walk and embrace the winter weather while being active.

The City of Leduc will be hosting the event again this year at the Civic Centre between 11:30 - 1:30pm. Planned activities include a walk around the park, public sating and shinny hockey on the outdoor pond IF the weather cooperates.

The Town of Devon will be hosting a walk - meet at the Devon Community Centre for a walk between 11am - 1pm.

Check with your local municipal or town office for Winter Walk Day activities near you.