Mercy Medical Center North Iowa

Outpatient Diabetes Education

Outpatient diabetes education is provided through individual or group classes and presented by several diabetes educators, who specialize in diabetes management.

Nurse diabetes educators provide an overview of diabetes management and teach blood sugar monitoring.

 They address issues relating to:

  • high and low blood sugars,
  • care during illness,
  • preventing long-term complications,
  • foot care,
  • psychological aspects,
  • motivate clients to plan behavior changes to maintain the best control of their disease.
  • share resources available on local, state and national levels.

Nutrition diabetes educators focus on:

  • how foods affect blood sugars,
  • determining food portions,
  • reading labels, eating out choices,
  • healthy cooking techniques,
  • adjusting meal plans to activities and illness.

It is known that no single diet works to treat all people with diabetes, instead diets should be individualized to meet the unique needs of each person according to their likes, dislikes and activities. Frequent monitoring of blood glucose levels enables individuals with diabetes to adjust their own insulin doses to compensate for the changes in usual eating times, meal pattern, and exercise habits. The American Diabetes and Dietetic Associations recommend a heart healthy meal plan, which is good for the entire family.