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November is Diabetes Awareness Month

November 3, 2022

During the month of November, the South Georgian Bay CHC is raising awareness on ways to manage your diabetes by sharing services and programs that can help you or a loved one. The theme for Diabetes Day this year is to highlight the need for access to higher quality diabetes education for healthcare professionals and people living with diabetes.

What is diabetes?

Diabetes is a disease that occurs when your body cannot make insulin or cannot use the insulin you make2. The pancreas makes a hormone called insulin and your body needs insulin so that it can use sugar as energy. Insulin helps to control the amount of sugar (glucose) in your blood. Our body works best when the blood sugar levels are controlled and when blood sugar is too high, it can cause damage to small blood vessels, nerves, and organs.

What is my risk?

There are different risk factors for type 1 and type 2 diabetes. For type 1 diabetes, having a parent or sibling with this kind of diabetes slightly increases your risk of having it as well3. Our genetic makeup and environment might play a role, but research is still being done to explore this.

The following are risk factors for type 2 diabetes3:

  • Age (>40 years old)
  • Family history of a family member living with diabetes
  • Ethnicity (African, Arab, Asian, Hispanic, Indigenous, or South Asian)
  • High blood pressure or cholesterol in the blood
  • High BMI or overweight (especially if the weight is mostly carried around the abdomen)
  • Certain conditions such as Polycystic Ovary Syndrome, obstructive sleep apnea, acanthosis nigricans (darkened patches of skin)
  • Psychiatric disorders (schizophrenia, depression, bipolar disorder)

Don’t ignore the above risk factors. If you think that you might be at risk, ask your healthcare provider about getting tested. Anyone over the age of 40 years should get tested for diabetes every 3 years and those with more than one risk factor should be tested at a younger age and more often4.

Assess Your Risk Here:

Services & programs in the community

There are several programs and services in the community that provide diabetes education and support:

  • Breaking Down Barriers Collingwood:
    • Monthly Diabetes Information Group
    • Call 705-445-1543 ext. 301
    • More information here
  • South Georgian Bay Community Health Centre:
    • Understanding Prediabetes and Diabetes Information workshop
  • North Simcoe Muskoka Self-Management Program:
    • Living a Healthy Life with Chronic Conditions Workshop
  • Diabetes Canada:
    • Virtual diabetes classes
  • International Diabetes Federation
    • Free diabetes courses
    • More information here

Additional resources

  • South Georgian Bay Community Health Centre nutrition workshops:
    • Chat, chop, create
    • Saving Money on Your Grocery Bill
    • Meal Planning 101
    • Sprouting and Microgreens
    • Heart Healthy Eating
  • Georgian Good Food Box
    • Visit
    • Call 705-445-9660
  • Diabetes Menu Planner:
    • Click here for menu planner and more information about diabetes
  • Collingwood Community Fridge:
    • Located at the Collingwood Youth Centre on 76 First Street, Collingwood
  • Wasaga Beach Public Library Food Pantry:
    • Located in the library at 120 Glenwood Drive, Wasaga Beach
  • Collingwood Public Library Food Pantry:
    • Located in the library at 55 Ste Marie Street, Collingwood
  • Group Social Walking with the Seniors Active Living Centre:
    • With or without poles
    • Mondays from 9:30-10:30am
    • Contact Judith for more information: 705-429-3321 ext. 1250



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