Ending Type 2 Diabetes One Exercise, Nutrition, and Gardening Class at a Time

Posts Tagged ‘Innovation’

FHCHC DPP Partners with Wholesome Wave and City Seed to Provide Farmer’s Market Vouchers to Patients!

In About the Program on March 28, 2012 at 3:07 PM

This summer, FHCHC’s Diabetes Prevention Program is partnering with City Seed and the Wholesome Wave Foundation to provide farmer’s market vouchers to our patients. The program is called the Fruit and Vegetable Prescription Program (FVRx), and aims to improve health through access to farmer’s markets.  Medical facilities across the country will be participating this year in the program, and measuring the effects on patient health through the 4-month market season.

Frederico Corazzini - Photographer

The FVRx program is perfectly aligned with our commitment to utilize innovative and practical strategies for improving the health of our patients. Obese children constitute the index patient – however, each of the index patients’ fellow household members receive $1/day each as well for use at the farmer’s markets. This feature of the program further supports the FHCHC DPP’s commitment to treating the entire household unit, and strays from traditional medical models that focus exclusively on the individual patient. Because diet-related chronic diseases often develop in the home, programs that include all household members tend to produce better results!

For more information on the FVRx Program, go to: http://wholesomewave.org/fvrx/

For more information on FHCHC’s farm-based activities, check out New Haven Farms: newhavenfarms.org


Fresh Direct, US/Mexican Style

In Nutrition Class on March 2, 2012 at 1:29 PM

One of the Diabetes Prevention Program participants, Anna for the purposes of this story, took it upon herself to prepare a distinctly Mexican salad for one of our nutrition class cooking demos this week. When collecting her receipt for the ingredients, I faintly balked. It was hand-written in pencil, and torn from a common academic three-ring binder. I sheepishly asked her whether she had a proper receipt, from the store in which she had purchased the vegetables. Then Anna tells me the most fascinating story.

Every week, she gets a call from a fruit and vegetable vendor asking whether he should come by on Saturday. Most weeks Anna says yes.

Around mid-day she hears someone knock at her front door. She descends the stairs of her own home, and proceeds to shop for good looking vegetables and fruits in the bed of this man’s pick-up truck! Indeed, the vendor brings his best vegetables and fruits to peoples’ doorsteps every Saturday for sale.

When I asked why she shops with him, as opposed to going to the store just over a mile from her home, she asks with patience how, exactly, she should shop without transportation? ‘ “Besides,” she explains, “he knows what we cook and always have exactly what we need for our favorite meals.”

Incredible the kinds of resources people with difficult circumstances create for themselves to meet their needs. If we continued to tap into this informal network, perhaps we could get even more vegetables and fruits on people’s tables on a daily basis, thereby lowering their risk for diet-related chronic disease!

The ingredients receipt!

Tailoring Programs Is Essential

In About the Program on January 5, 2011 at 10:25 AM

Two recent videos, when combined, illustrate a driving force behind FHCHC’s Diabetes Prevention Program: tailoring. The National Institute of Health’s Diabetes Prevention Program is a brilliant and successful program. Central to its success, however, is that it is perfect for the population to whom it was originally delivered. Aligned with a long lineage of community health centers that focus on tailoring health care to fit their particular population’s character and constraints, so did FHCHC’s Diabetes Prevention Program adjust the original curriculum to fit the needs of Hispanic families in Fair Haven, Connecticut. Around the same time that FHCHC’s Diabetes Prevention Program was being translated and readied for execution, Malcolm Gladwell, author of The Tipping Point and many other noteworthy titles, delivered a Ted Talk in which he demonstrates the importance of tailoring products to fit the needs of those being served. Watch Gladwell’s Ted Talk here.



And like FHCHC’s Diabetes Prevention Program, state politicians and health officials on the smallest and most obese republic in the world are implementing a site-specific diabetes prevention strategy to try to reverse the effects of a homogenous western diet on the Pacific island. See ABC News’ video on Nauru here.


Although diabetes is a disease that is common to most developed and developing nations today, ensuring the success of diabetes-centered health interventions is contingent upon this tailoring principle.

DPP Program and Garden Component Featured in CT Department of Public Health Newsletter!

In About the Program, Community Garden on December 14, 2010 at 3:41 PM

Diabetes Community Partnership Guide | NDEP

In Diabetes Prevention Resources on October 12, 2010 at 3:06 PM

This diabetes prevention and education resource articulates many of the processes central to the success of our Diabetes Prevention Program. From statistics to strategies for preventing or controlling diabetes through physical activity and community organizing, the guide is in-depth and simple.

Download it here:

Diabetes Community Partnership Guide | NDEP.

Yale Graduate School Day of Service Adventure

In About the Program on October 12, 2010 at 1:07 PM
October 9th we hosted 25 Yale graduate students at our community garden, giving them the option of preparing the garden for the winter months, constructing our new and beautiful greenhouse, or completing the mural begun during our Slow Food Dig In Celebration. Miracle after miracle made the day possible. Mike Trepadino, owner and operator of Growell in Cheshire donated a greenhouse valued way higher than we could ever pay. Oscar, Alfredo, Pedro, Tony, John, all Chabaso employees fearlessly led by owner Charlie Negaro, picked up the greenhouse materials and began construction without any worries. Saturday morning, Bom Menino, a Capoeira student and the driving force behind our mural, worked with a group of the Yale students to add carrots, sunflowers, and the Diabetes Prevention Program logo to the garden wall.

With the greenhouse, we are going to be able to extend our growing season through the winter. Maria, one of our Diabetes Prevention Program participants, led the soil preparation efforts.

A group of the volunteers harvested our entire batch of basil. We made pesto over the weekend, and as I write this, the Diabetes Prevention Program staff are selling the batch so we can buy seeds for the winter garden.

Yale students studying everything from aeronautics to biology, joined forces with Chabaso Bakery’s operations staff, Massaro Farmer Steve Munno, and the husband of one of our Diabetes Prevention Program participants to piece together the greenhouse.

Overall, a very successful day.

The Discovery of a True Miracle Drug

In Diabetes Prevention Resources on October 6, 2010 at 10:50 AM

Read this recent NYTimes article on the evolution of diabetes’ miracle drug: insulin. It touches on the complexity of diabetes, from research to distribution, the similarities between the epidemic in the early 20th century and today, and the chronic versus acute nature of the disease.

Rediscovering the First Miracle Drug

By ABIGAIL ZUGER, M.D. Published: October 4, 2010

Injectable insulin, long sought by researchers, is a blockbuster medication whose birth is almost forgotten.

“Health: Panel seeks to use L.A.’s abundance of fresh food in fight against childhood obesity – latimes.com”

In Diabetes Prevention Resources on October 4, 2010 at 9:50 AM

People are beginning to make the connection between health and food systems. Read what LA is doing: Health: Panel seeks to use L.A.’s abundance of fresh food in fight against childhood obesity – latimes.com.

Recipe for Success – The DPP Story, Abbreviated

In About the Program on June 10, 2010 at 6:12 PM

Recipe for Creating a Successful DPP Program:

1. Take two passionate, dedicated healthcare providers with a taste for innovation.

2. Mix in 30% diabetes rate amongst minority patients.

3. Gently fold in a major nation-wide study proving that lifestyle intervention prevents diabetes.

3. In a separate bowl, sift through nation-wide grant applications and funding sources until what is left is a foundation committed to using sophisticated research results to impact minority health.

4. Combine the committed foundation with passionate, dedicated healthcare providers, the 30% diabetes rate, and proven study results and let marinate for 6-8 months – the creation, called Diabetes Prevention Program, will begin to rise.

5. When looking close to bursting, allow into the kitchen a group of pre-diabetic patients who can’t wait to taste what’s been cooking.

6. Bake, and closely observe results.

7. Document appearances, smells, reactions, successful and unsuccessful aspects of the program, and repeat process as needed.

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