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Living with diabetes takes work

There is help available when facing a diagnosis of diabetes.

When diagnosed with diabetes, you have to learn what diabetes is, how it affects your body, and what you can do to manage it.

According to the Association of Diabetes Care and Education Specialists, there are seven health behaviors that people with diabetes should engage in. These behaviors include coping, healthy eating, staying active, checking glucose levels, taking medication, problem-solving, and reducing risks. These seven health behaviors are the pillars for managing diabetes.

It can be difficult to learn everything you need to know about diabetes during a routine healthcare visit. To learn more, think about attending diabetes education classes or programs. Diabetes education programs can be in group or individual sessions and are designed to support the seven health behaviors needed for diabetes management. Diabetes education programs can help people new to diabetes, but also those who have had diabetes for years and need a refresher or extra motivation.

At University of Utah Health Utah Diabetes and Endocrinology Center, we have a program called the Intensive Diabetes Education and Support — IDEAS, for short. IDEAS is a one-time group diabetes education program held in-person or virtually during COVID-19. IDEAS is taught by a team of healthcare providers; such as a nurse practitioner, physician, certified diabetes educator, and a social worker. People who attend the IDEAS program can bring a family member or friend for additional support. Those who have attended IDEAS in the past have improved their blood glucose levels, have less feelings of ‘diabetes burnout’, and increase their diabetes management behaviors. IDEAS is available in English and Spanish.

To learn more or schedule to attend the IDEAS Program, call 801-581-7761 or email