The War Against Diabetes

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One of the cooks at the Wellness Center.

One of the cooks at the Wellness Center. Photo: Canvasback Missions

In the Marshall Islands, 75 percent of adults over the age of 50 are diabetic. Canvasback Missions, which made the above video, is helping to reverse the deadly diabetes epidemic through collaboration with the World Diabetes Foundation and the RMI Ministry of Health.

Canvasback’s Wellness Center, which is next to Majuro Hospital, runs a lifestyle intervention program for individuals who are diabetic, pre-diabetic, or suffer from other non-communicable diseases. The program implements cutting-edge lifestyle medicine in the treatment and management of patients with type 2 diabetes. Participants learn about the causes and consequences of their diabetes, and why lifestyle changes are more effective than medications in the prevention and treatment of diabetes.

For two weeks, patients eat all meals at the Wellness Center, and also learn how to cook their own healthy food from the Center’s award winning chefs. Agriculture experts teach practical gardening skills, and participants have the opportunity to grow their own produce using grow boxes. Participants also learn the basics of fitness through music, dance, and aerobics, led by the Center’s excellent Fitness Directors. All participants receive personal attention and regular blood-glucose monitoring, and followup groups for alumni meet monthly to share goals and challenges with one another.

For most participants, the lessons learned at the Wellness Center are life transforming. In many cases, participants can reduce or discontinue medications, and in some cases, the lifestyle interventions result in complete reversal of their disease.

You can contact the Wellness Center on (692) 625-7712.

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