Fighting Diabetes Through Education

November 17, 2017 |

Providing education is a key part of how Mountain Park Health Center cares for our patients. Treating diabetes requires day-to-day knowledge of medications, nutrition, exercise and the proper ways to monitor blood sugar levels.

With our integrated care model, we bring together doctors, registered dietitians, clinical pharmacists and behavioral health consultants to ensure patients have all the resources to manage their diabetes under one roof – often in one exam room.

On-Site Diabetes Classes

In addition to offering access to an entire Care Team at each appointment, we host diabetes classes at our clinics. These classes are open to patients who are diabetic or pre-diabetic and are geared toward education and prevention. Our registered dietitians and behavioral health consultants use their unique skills to educate patients on self-management of the disease.

Patient reading tips how to best manage diabetes
Patients get tips on how to best manage diabetes.

“A registered dietitian is someone who can help people naturally try to improve health, prevent common diseases, and help lead healthier lifestyles through food and exercise,” Jennie Altman, Registered Dietitian from our Goodyear Clinic said.

Classes are offered nearly every week, and are broken down into four sessions.

The first class teaches our patients about diabetes. They find out what the disease is and what it means to be a diabetic. The class also talks about the changes that diabetes has on the body.

“This first class let’s patients share their stories of living with diabetes,” Jennie said.

Participants form a close-knit group where they can bounce ideas off each other and share their stories so that they can work through similar struggles. Ultimately, this makes the classes not only about information but also about transforming your life.

Class number two is focused on diet and how the food we put into our bodies makes us feel. The class also discusses how specific foods cause sugar levels to rise or drop.

“Our third class is all about heart disease because diabetics are at a higher risk for getting heart disease,” Jennie shared.

Our team offers patients much needed advice and strategies to help confront diabetes. This comes in handy during every class, but especially the fourth class where the focus is on long-term complications.

“This is the most difficult class to discuss with the patients, because they don’t want to think about that,” Jennie said. “At the same time, it is the one that motivates our patients to stay on track.”

With the help of the behavioral health consultant, patients learn ways the disease can affect mental health and provide patients with strategies to overcome them.

MPHC staff discusses foods to eat for patients with diabetes
Established patients can join our classes for free.

Victorino Garcia, a patient at our Goodyear Clinic, shared with us how much of an impact the diabetes classes have had on him.

“It has helped me tremendously,” he said. “I have improved the way I eat by following what they have shown me. It helps me be healthier and have better control of my diabetes.”

To become a Mountain Park patient and learn more about our diabetes classes and other programs we offer call (602) 243-7277.

For more information, please email

MPHC patients with diabetes