With 25.8 million Americans living with diabetes, and an additional 79 million with prediabetes, it is more important than ever to learn how to live healthy, be active and change the future of the disease. The American Diabetes Association EXPO is one big way to help Stop Diabetes® on a community level.
EXPOs are free educational events bursting with information, support and activities to benefit just about anyone interested in diabetes management and prevention. There, people with diabetes can take steps to better control their disease and lower the risk of complications. Those diagnosed with prediabetes can continue their efforts to prevent or delay the onset. And family members and friends can learn how to best support the person they love with diabetes—for example, by serving healthier meals or making fitness goals together.
EXPO began in 1995 in Phoenix and has since grown to 11 cities around the country. I first got involved a few years ago when I served as co-chair for EXPO Minneapolis. I’m a diabetes researcher and clinician by profession, and I enjoy all opportunities to put useful information about diabetes into the hands of the people who need it most. Last year, EXPO reached more than 60,000 such individuals.
At EXPO, you can browse dozens of exhibits and presentations brimming with the latest products and information to help you take care of yourself. (Sample Zumba classes, anyone?) Attendees can also watch live cooking demonstrations showcasing diabetes-friendly recipes.
One of the greatest draws is the free health screenings for health factors such as blood pressure, blood glucose and cholesterol. EXPO has expert dieticians and endocrinologists onsite ready to assess your results and answer your diabetes-related questions.
You’ll even hear inspiring testimonials from people with diabetes in your community, people you can connect with to form that oh-so-important support system. EXPOs also include a Family Fun Zone geared toward youth with diabetes.
You can then swing by the bookstore to stock up on our award-winning guides and cookbooks. And don’t forget to visit the American Diabetes Association Experience area to find out about other Association events happening in your area, such as Tour de Cure® and Step Out: Walk to Stop Diabetes®.
Best part? It’s all completely free! I encourage you to register in advance, but if you’re a last-minute planner, you may also just come to the EXPO nearest you and sign up onsite.
See below for the full 2012 EXPO schedule. All events conveniently take place on a Saturday, so I hope you’ll mark your calendar and make it a family affair. I guarantee that you’ll learn so much about diabetes while having fun—and that there will be something for everyone.
For more information and to register, visit our website. The 2012 schedule kicks off this Saturday in Portland, and I hope everyone there has a blast learning how to Stop Diabetes!
Ever been to an EXPO? Please comment below to share your experience.
Elizabeth R. Seaquist, MD
Vice President, Medicine & Science
American Diabetes Association
2012 American Diabetes Association EXPO schedule:
- EXPO Portland (OR) – Oregon Convention Center, Feb. 11
- EXPO Salt Lake City (UT) – South Exhibition Center, Feb. 25
- EXPO Denver (CO) – Colorado Convention Center, March 10
- EXPO Los Angeles (CA) – Los Angeles Convention Center, March 17
- EXPO Chicago (IL) – McCormick Place, April 14
- EXPO San Antonio (TX) – Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center, April 14
- EXPO Seattle (WA) – Washington State Convention & Trade Center, North Halls 4E/F, April 21
- EXPO Northwest Arkansas (Springdale) – Northwest Arkansas Convention Center, June 9
- EXPO Minneapolis (MN) – Minneapolis Convention Center, Oct. 13
- EXPO New York City (NY) – Jacob K. Javits Convention Center, Nov. 3
- EXPO Pittsburgh (PA) – David L. Lawrence Convention Center, Nov. 10