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Take Precautions to Prevent Diabetes and Control Health Concerns This Holiday

By Dawn Woods-Sapp, LMT

This year is going by fast, and the holidays are quickly approaching. During this time of year, most of us are getting ready to prepare big meals for our family and friends. I can’t wait to make some sweat-potato pies and indulge in the festivities. However, let us keep in mind that health care is extremely important; overindulging can create health concerns.

November marks National Diabetes Month, a nationwide effort to raise awareness about diabetes. This month, the focus is on taking action to prevent diabetes-related health problems.

Diabetes is a chronic disease that develops when your blood glucose, also known as blood sugar, is too high. It affects around 37 million Americans, including both adults and young people, and is more common among African Americans. High blood sugar levels can cause damage to the eyes, kidneys, nerves, and heart and have been linked to certain types of cancer. In severe cases, individuals may require amputation of body parts due to poor blood flow and high blood pressure.

However, there's good news: by taking charge of your health, you can prevent diabetes-related health problems. Here are ways to do it:

Get Regular Massages

Keeping your blood pressure low is the key to reducing diabetes. As a licensed massage therapist, I want to encourage you to take care of your body.

It is essential to keep your blood flowing properly to avoid blood clots and to help lower your blood pressure. Massage helps stimulate your blood flow and clean out toxins in your body. It also helps improve cardiovascular health and reduce other ailments such as cancer pain, osteoarthritis, and other mental and physical health concerns.

Managing diabetes can be challenging. If it can often make you feel down, sad, or overwhelmed, Massage can help with all these symptoms and help you cope with stress. You may also consider talking to a mental health counselor or joining a support group.

Manage your blood glucose, blood pressure, and cholesterol levels.

Research from the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), part of the National Institutes of Health, shows that managing your diabetes as soon as possible after diagnosis may help prevent diabetes health problems. You can start by managing your diabetes ABCs.

A is for the A1C test that health care professionals use to measure your average blood glucose levels. Some people with diabetes also use devices to track their blood glucose throughout the day and night.

B is for blood pressure.

C is for cholesterol.

Ask your healthcare team what your ABCs goals should be. Lifestyle habits such as planning healthy meals, being physically active, getting enough sleep, and not smoking may help you manage your diabetes ABCs. You don’t have to do it all at once. Start slow and build healthier habits from there.

What is Normal Blood Pressure by Age?

Age Group



​18-39 years

110/68 mm Hg

119/70 mm Hg

40-59 years

122/74 mm Hg

124/77 mm Hg

60+ years

139/68 mm Hg

133/69 mm Hg


Join us on Wednesday, November 15th, 2023, for FIT & NU's weekly group coaching webinar, Habit Therapy™, where Dawn will be the guest coach. She will present a more detailed insight into the benefits of massage through engaging and interactive techniques and demonstrations. If you're a member, RSVP to join us via the app or website. Non-members can tune in to the Facebook Live event on FIT & NU's Facebook page at 6 pm MST on Wednesday, November 15th.


About the Author | Dawn Woods-Sapp

Dawn Woods-Sapp is a licensed massage therapist with a focus on working with clients with chronic diseases, such as diabetes. She utilizes specialized techniques to aid in managing symptoms and enhance clients' quality of life. Alongside her therapeutic skills, Dawn is committed to educating her clients on the various benefits of massage therapy. Her compassionate and holistic approach addresses the disease's physical, emotional, and mental aspects and helps clients achieve a more balanced and fulfilling life.

To book a massage with Dawn, visit

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