Top dads help raise money for diabetes research

By Staff
Northwest Asian Weekly

The “Father of the Year” awards ceremony brought together many supporters of the American Diabetes Association, as well as friends of Father of the Year Nate Miles. Clockwise, from top left, Miles is seen with Hon. Ron Sims, left, and Hon. George Fleming; his family, including his mother-in-law, left, daughters Gabby and Sophie, wife, Leslie, and son Noah; his family onstage while he speaks from the podium; with Michael Verchot; with Gayle Johnson; and with Carolyn Kelly and Jeff Hattori. (Photos by Assunta Ng/NWAW)

About 9 percent of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders have been diagnosed with diabetes, according to a 2014 statistics report issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

This doesn’t include the AAPIs who are among the 8 million people who are undiagnosed — they have the disease, but don’t know it — or the cases of those with “prediabetes,” based on patients’ glucose levels.

Within the nine percent of API adults affected by diabetes, the study showed the rate of diagnosed diabetes at 4.4 percent for Chinese, 11.3 percent for Filipinos, 13 percent for Asian Indians, and 8.8 percent for other Asians.

The good news is that diabetes can usually be treated and managed, and ongoing research continues in the quest to prevent and cure the disease, as well as to find ways to improve patients’ lives.

The study showed that 13.2 percent of black Americans have been diagnosed with diabetes.

According to the study, African Americans, Hispanics/Latinos, American Indians, some Asians, and Native Hawaiians or other Pacific Islanders are at particularly high risk for type 2 diabetes and its complications.

Type 2 diabetes in children and adolescents, although uncommon, is being diagnosed more frequently among American Indians, African Americans, Hispanics/Latinos, Asians, and Pacific Islanders.

In Seattle, the Father’s Day Council held a “Father of the Year” awards ceremony on June 4 at the Fairmont Olympic Hotel to raise money for the American Diabetes Association. To date, the Father’s Day Council has raised more than $40 million for diabetes research. The 2014 Fathers of the Year are Dan Dixon, chief community engagement officer for Providence Health & Services, and Nathaniel “Nate” Miles, vice president for strategic initiatives for Eli Lilly and Company.

The event aims to focus attention on the value of “good, sound parenting,” recognizing fathers who “portray and epitomize family, citizenship, charity, civility, and responsibility in their everyday lives.” Since 1999, the Father’s Day Council has dedicated its Father of the Year events across the country to supporting advocacy, education, and research for diabetes.

Diabetes is a group of diseases marked by high levels of blood glucose resulting from problems in how insulin is produced or how it works in the body.

The two types of diabetes require different care. Those with type 1 (previously called “juvenile-onset”) must have insulin to survive. Those with type 2 (previously called “adult-onset”) can control their blood glucose by following a healthy meal plan and a program of regular activity, losing excess weight, taking medications, and in some cases taking insulin.

Diabetes can affect many parts of the body and is associated with serious complications, such as heart disease and stroke, blindness, kidney failure, and lower-limb amputation. Some complications can be reduced with good glucose control. Also, early detection and treatment of complications can prevent progression, so monitoring with dilated eye exams, urine tests, and foot exams is essential.

Because the risk of cardiovascular disease is increased in diabetes and prediabetes, blood pressure and lipid management, along with smoking cessation, are especially important.

Diabetes is the seventh leading cause of death in the United States. The CDC estimates that the direct and indirect costs related to the disease totaled $245 billion in 2012. (end)

The information in the CDC report, “National Diabetes Statistics Report: Estimates of Diabetes and its Burden in the United States, 2014,” was derived from 2009–2012 surveys, data, and the U.S. Census Bureau.

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