by Helen Martin
Over 100 people turned out for an informative and enjoyable free-of-charge HealthWEST Diabetes Self-Management seminar held at Te Whare Oranga ô Parakai in early October. Many were locals, while others had traveled some distance to be there.
A show of hands revealed that while just a third of the participants were diabetes sufferers, a number of others present had heart and/or blood pressure issues.
The core purpose of the day was to empower people with diabetes or other conditions to be in charge of their own health. Lively and interesting speakers addressed the audience on topics which included living with a diabetes diagnosis, the link between diabetes and heart disease, healthy eating (quality and quantity) and the importance of being active, taking care of your feet and making good decisions for your health.
There was plenty of lively discussion as participants shared their experiences and sought advice and information from the speakers. As well as a healthy, nutritious morning tea and lunch, HealthWEST gave each person a folder containing comprehensive health and diet information to take home. There was also a prize draw, with five lucky people winning a food hamper.
At the end of the seminar participants learned that this was the last one to be held, as funding for the initiative has now been withdrawn.