"I’m a very devout Christian. And the Lord has got it in his hands... but I see no reason to take chances that you don’t have to take. So, therefore, the vaccine, that was my choice." - Jeanie Wheeler, Johnson County
In their own voices, East Kentuckians talk about prediabetes, type 2 diabetes, and working to make healthier lifestyle choices, despite the challenges. Push play to listen to each story, or click each title for a full transcript & more.
"Instead of taking a chance on, ‘Well, my mom was diabetic, my uncle was, my grandma was— so that means I’m gonna be.’ Uh-uh. That doesn’t mean that you have to become a diabetic as well!"
"That is a misconception—that, you know, a lot of people think, ‘If I’m gonna get it, I’m gonna get it.’ But there are so many things you can do to try to reduce your risk!"
"I’ve been eating at home a lot more [due to COVID-19]... I’ll make my own pizza crust, so I can control the sugar. I’ve even gone as far as taking some of my mom’s old recipes and converting those over to sugar-free."
"I used to drink, like, a 24-pack [of Dr. Pepper] in 2 or 3 days. That’s a lot of sugar. Now, every time I get paid, I’ll only buy a 12-pack, and keep it in the fridge, and not buy another one until I get paid again."
"You've got two choices: you either exercise, or you take a shot. I’d rather have exercise... I lost about 25 pounds doing it also. I feel like a new person!"
"I was like, ‘I wanna talk about a diet... Don’t just up the medication.’ And so that’s when I started to notice a big difference."
"I was a caretaker, so I didn't get out a lot... [I've lost] 23 pounds. This has been life-changing for me. And I couldn't have hand-picked any better group." - LaDonna Arms (L), of Johnson Co., on the Diabetes Prevention Program
"People will say, ‘I drink all the time, I’m so thirsty,’ and I say, ‘have you had your A1C checked!?’ It’s no fun, I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy. Go get it checked! It ain’t gonna hurt."