Diabetes Services: Taking Charge for a Healthier Life

If you’ve been diagnosed with diabetes, you’re far from alone. According to the American Diabetes Association, about 29 million Americans have diabetes. That’s nearly 10 percent of the population.

While the statistics can seem overwhelming, there’s a lot you (or someone you love) can do to avoid complications, and live the healthy, long life you deserve. If you don’t have diabetes but are at risk for it, preventive care, modest lifestyle changes and ongoing education can also go a long way toward improving your health and wellness.

Whether you’re newly diagnosed, at high risk for complications or need a refresher on how to control your blood sugar, Holland Hospital can help you manage your diabetes—instead of letting it manage you.

Dr. Kristen Sumners, Lakeshore Health Partners-Family Medicine, talks about symptoms and risk factors for type 2 diabetes.

What is Diabetes?

A diagnosis of type 1 diabetes means your pancreas is no longer capable of producing insulin. Therefore, it will be your responsibility to monitor your blood glucose (sugar) levels and administer the insulin your body needs. The majority of people with diabetes have type 2, which is associated with older age, obesity, family history of the disease, previous history of gestational diabetes (diabetes in pregnancy), physical inactivity and ethnicity. In type 2 diabetes, the pancreas usually makes enough insulin, but the body does not use it correctly.

Left untreated, diabetes can lead to serious complications, including heart disease, eye, kidney and nerve damage, skin conditions, and more.

It’s also estimated that 79 million Americans have pre-diabetes, a condition in which blood glucose levels rise above normal, but have yet to reach the level of diabetes. Pre-diabetes is a warning sign that type 2 diabetes may soon develop.

You can learn more about diabetes here.  

Let Our Team be Your Guide

Does managing your diabetes seem like a full-time job? Living with diabetes can be complicated, and life can easily get in the way of eating right, exercising, monitoring your blood sugar and visiting your doctor.

The good news is, we have a dedicated team to guide you every step of the way. Led by your primary care doctor, your diabetes care team may also incorporate the expertise of:

  • Diabetes educators (registered nurses and registered dietitians)
  • Mental health professionals
  • Fitness trainers
  • Support group with expert speakers

Diabetes Care: Self-Management and Empowerment

If you have diabetes (or think you might), the first and best thing you can do is learn all you can about the condition. Being proactive with your disease and your lifestyle is critical to your long-term health.

Holland Hospital’s Diabetes Self-Management Education Program can give you the knowledge, tools and support you need to successfully manage your diabetes. And it’s good to know that most insurances will cover the cost of up to 10 hours of one-on-one education and nutritional counseling for those newly diagnosed.

Based on national standards developed by the American Diabetes Association, our program embraces a team approach that includes you, your loved ones, your primary care doctor and our certified diabetes educators. With you as our most valued partner, we can help you:

  • Feel empowered to better manage your disease
  • Lower health care costs due to improved symptom control
  • Decrease your risk of eye, kidney and nerve damage, and cardiovascular disease
  • Increase your energy level and independence
  • Enhance your overall quality of life

One-on-one visits and group classes are available as part of our Diabetes Self-Management Education Program. Some of the topics covered include:

  • Type 1, type 2 and gestational diabetes overview
  • Meal planning for blood-sugar control
  • Improving blood sugar through exercise
  • Monitoring blood-sugar levels and targets to reach
  • Medication management
  • Insulin therapy training and insulin pump therapy management
  • Preventing short- and long-term diabetes complications

Holland Hospital also offers ongoing community diabetes education and prevention classes. Search our online classes and events calendar.

National Diabetes Prevention Program

Holland Hospital is one of few area locations to offer access to the National Diabetes Prevention Program, a program specifically designed for those with pre-diabetes. Taught by a certified diabetes educator and trained lifestyle coach, the program has been proven to prevent or delay the onset of type 2 diabetes. Our program is based on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)-approved curriculum, and consists of 16 weekly sessions followed by six monthly sessions.




  • About Type II Diabetes

    About Type II Diabetes

    Kristen Sumners, DO, Lakeshore Health Partners Family Medicine Zeeland talks about symptoms and risk factors of Type 2 Diabetes.

  • Diabetes Self-Management Programs

    Diabetes Self-Management Programs

    Information and introduction from Diabetes Self-Management Education programs in Michigan and how these programs can help people diagnosed with pre-diabetes or diabetes prevent or manage their disease.