#6 [Part 1]: How To Prevent Obesity and Diabetes: A Case Study

#6 [Part 1]: How To Prevent Obesity and Diabetes: A Case Study


In today’s episode, Maria answers a question posed by her friend, Mary. Mary asked how she could prevent obesity and diabetes despite her family history?
Maria analyzes 8 key factors in Mary’s life that determine her health and lifestyle habits. Although it is important to understand these factors, the ability to act to change those you can improve requires an urgency to change. This is what Maria will elaborate on in the next episode and part II of this series.


Today’s episode is Part I of a mini-series. This episode is for you if your family health history isn’t one you are envious of and you DO NOT want anything to do with. Or maybe your family health history isn’t that awful but you find your health isn’t where it would it to be.

If that’s you, you might have asked yourself “How do I prevent x,w,z?” The prevention may relate to obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer, dementia, osteoporosis, you name it. Or like a former client of mine told me: “I don’t want to be in a wheelchair.”

If you are listening to this podcast is because you want to age beautifully and independently, you want to enjoy life RIGHT NOW and later in life. Most importantly, you want to do more of the things that bring your happiness from the inside out.

Please repeat after me: “AMEN TO THAT!”

A few weeks ago, I asked a few people in my network to share any burning questions they had about health and fitness I could answer on the podcast. A friend of mine who I was about to see in person had a great question. Let’s call her Mary.

When I met with Mary, she agreed to answer a few questions about her lifestyle and habits. That makes this episode richer, juicier, and more significant.

And ultimately, if her story resonates with you, let’s talk and discuss a plan that will change your path to a healthier and more confident version of you.

There are two things that emerged during our conversation:

  • I believe that Mary’s habits and overall situation are the reality for many.
  • How to create a sense of urgency for change in people?

Mary’s question to me was:

How do I prevent obesity and diabetes considering my family history? All my mom’s sisters started to see the weight creep up just around my age. They are now in their 70s, wearing a size 16, obese from a BMI standpoint, and have diabetes. I don’t want that to happen to me.

Mary is a 47-year-old African American, a married busy businesswoman with no kids. Nine years ago, when she was trying to get pregnant, Mary was diagnosed with pre-diabetes. That scared her and she added walking to her life and lucky her, with that one change, she was able to lower and control her Hemoglobin A1C.

Let me back up and tell you that the hemoglobin A1C is a blood test that measures your average blood sugar levels over the past 3 months. It’s used to diagnose prediabetes and diabetes.

What’s a Normal Hemoglobin A1c Test?

A normal and healthy range for the A1c level is between 4% and 5.6%. Levels between 5.7% and 6.4% are in the pre-diabetes range, and levels of 6.5% or higher mean you have diabetes.

Blood sugar and insulin resistance are topics I am super passionate about it because it was for years one of my health struggles. Keep listening. I will take deep dives into these babies.

Getting back to Mary’s question…

As you can imagine, the topic of disease prevention is as complex as unique. That’s because each of our bodies is unique. That’s to say that what works for your friend might not work for you. The one strategy and even quick fix you are looking for might do you more harm than good in the long-term.

Let’s take a look at Mary’s health and lifestyle habits.

Exercise: She walks less than a mile while walking the dog after dinner. Four times a week, she stands for prolonged periods of time, not necessarily walking though.

Nutrition: Her own words: “I am not really on it”. She has no dietary restrictions, eats whatever she wants. She strives to eat more vegetables but struggles to add them to her plate every day. She is more of a meat and beans eater.

Breakfast is coffee with cream. Lunch is something small. She cooks more in the winter, so 1-2 a week, she brings leftovers. Otherwise, she orders from the local cafeteria. During summer, she doesn’t cook much so dinner is something she can put together quickly and easily or restaurant food.

Eating Habits: The coffee and all the sugar during the day suppress her appetite until dinner and by then, she is STARVING! She doesn’t chew food well—during lunchtime because she’s super busy with clients, at night, because she is starving.

Eats after work, around 8-8:30pm. She snacks after dinner. Some of her go-to snacks are cracker and cheese, tuna fish with crackers, trail mil, tortilla chips, deli meat wrapped on cheese, maybe some grapes or pieces of an apple.  She loves having some ice cream after dinner too.

Hydration: On her words “it’s horrible.” She may drink 32oz of water a day. However, she drinks one can of soda a day and sweet tea during the day. She also sips on coffee with sugary creamer during the day. The coffee curbs her hunger.

Sleep: She goes to bed around 12:30-1 am. I sleep with my phone under my pillow. Many times, she wakes up tired because doesnt’ sleep well. Sleep is kind of off because sometimes she has insomnia. She gets an average of 5 hours of sleep. She NEVER gets eight hours of sleep.

If she goes to bed early and wakes up in the middle of the night, she tries to fall back asleep. If it’s been 30-45 minutes and no sleep is nowhere to be found, she gets up. Watches some TV and gets work done on her laptop.

Stress: On a scale from 1 to 10 where 10 is crazy stupid stressful, she is a 5. Sure, there are days that life happens and it is super stressful, but on average, her stress level is 5. Woohoo to that!!!

Fun: Mary has fun in life and happy overall. She gets two thumbs up!

Now, let’s move to the last item:

Toxicity: Due to her line of work, she touches and smells products with various chemicals. There is so much she can do to avoid them.

Then, there is SMOKING. She knows smoking is absolutely awful for her. She has tried to quit many times but hasn’t got rid of this addiction yet.

During our conversation, I asked:

Do you have a sense of urgency to change?



Before you go, do you know your A1C?

Next, grab your pen and paper.

Jot down your story, your choices, about one or more areas that I touched upon earlier. The areas were:

Exercise, nutrition, hydration, eating habits, stress, sleep, fun, and toxicity.

If you would like my guidance, book a call at www.BeFabBeYou.com/energy-audit.

And if Mary’s story resonates with someone else you know, please share this episode because what we will continue to discuss might be what they need to ignite change.

Thanks for listening and talk to you soon.

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