HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow)- Volunteers are busy putting the finishing touches on tents and tables in Kapiolani Park for tomorrow's 'Step Out to Stop Diabetes Walk.'
Despite all the events to raise awareness, the numbers in Hawaii are staggering, and in most cases, could be prevented.
Darin Yokoyama is an old pro testing his blood sugar. He's lived with Type 1 diabetes since he was a child. "I've probably done this about 50 thousand times in my life. I do this 4 times a day and insulin is taken 3 times a day and I've been doing this for 35 years now."
His glucometer is his lifeline-- and with a high reading, insulin is a must.
Darin has to do this because Type 1 diabetes is hereditary and incurable. Type 2, on the other hand, is preventable with a healthy lifestyle.
"It can be prevented if people see the warning signs" says Yokoyama. "Watch their diets, get exercise and watch their weight."
About 3-thousand people are expected for tomorrow's walk. That's a big number, but small when compared to how many people have Diabetes in Hawaii. According to Leslie Lam, the American Association of Diabetes of Hawaii Executive Director, "113-thousand people have Diabetes in Hawaii and 28 thousand are at risk and they don't even know it. If trends continue, one out of 2 keiki in the future will be at risk so we want to educate them."
There have been huge advances in the fight against Diabetes since darin was diagnosed in the 70's. They didn't even have blood sugar meters back then, and the needle was a lot bigger.
In Darin's eyes, "In the old days, it was extremely painful but now it's not that bad."
The first step is getting tested to learn if you're one of those living with diabetes, or at risk, who doesn't know it.
Age, blood pressure, family history, physical activity, and weight are the major risk factors. You can take a free risk test at this link.
Here's more information on the walk:
Step Out: Walk to Stop Diabetes®
Saturday, March 16, 2013
8:00 a.m. - Registration starts at 7:00 a.m.
Queen Kapiolani Park
Join us as we raise diabetes awareness and funds to support the 26 million people in the United States who have diabetes, and especially the 113,000 living with diabetes here in Hawaii.
After the brisk 2.3 mile walk around Queen Kapiolani Park, visit our health fair and keiki tents while you enjoy entertainment provided by the many local artists who lend their voices in the fight against diabetes.
•Hawai'i Pono'i - sung by Grammy nominated, Raiatea Helm
•Royal Hawaiian Band, 2012 Hawaii Academy of Recording Arts Industry Award Winner
•Internationally renowned ukulele artist, Kalei Gamiao