Why Offer a Lifestyle Change Program?

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About 1 out of 3 American adults has prediabetes—that’s 96 million people.

People with prediabetes are at higher risk of heart attack, stroke, and type 2 diabetes.

Type 2 diabetes puts people at risk for many serious health problems, including:

  • Heart attack
  • Stroke
  • Blindness
  • Kidney failure
  • Loss of toes, feet, or legs

Fortunately, having prediabetes doesn’t guarantee a person will get type 2 diabetes. Type 2 diabetes can be prevented.

CDC-recognized diabetes prevention lifestyle change programs can help people prevent or delay type 2 diabetes and improve their overall health.

In addition to the obvious health benefits, here are some other reasons to consider offering such a program.

Proven, Science-based Program

Cut your type 2 diabetes risk in half

Studies have shown that people with prediabetes who take part in a structured lifestyle change program and lose 5% to 7% of their body weight through healthier eating and 150 minutes of physical activity per week can cut their risk of developing type 2 diabetes by 58% (71% for people over 60 years old).

In addition, lifestyle change programs can reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke associated with prediabetes and improve participants’ overall health.

CDC monitors and evaluates programs to ensure quality and provides feedback on data submitted so you can make improvements if needed. Because the CDC-recognized programs are so effective, some employers and insurers are offering them as covered benefits.

Read the Lifestyle Change Program Details section to learn more about what a lifestyle change program is like.

Complement to Your Current Work

Does your organization already work to improve the health and well-being of individuals in your community? A diabetes prevention lifestyle change program is a natural addition to your current activities. And it’s a great way to expand your reach in the community.

Increased Visibility and Credibility

CDC lists all recognized lifestyle change programs on its website. When someone searches for a lifestyle change program in your area, your organization will be on the list. This can bring increased visibility to your organization and its programs.

Additionally, the science behind the program and its association with CDC brings added credibility. People will know you’re offering a trusted program. This can help with enrolling participants and getting referrals from health care professionals.

Part of National Prevention Effort

Buildings and houses

Your organization will join thousands of others across the country that offer in-person or online CDC-recognized lifestyle change programs. Curious which other organizations offer a program? Go to Registry of Recognized Organizations.

You’ll also be part of the largest national effort to mobilize and bring effective lifestyle change programs to communities across the country. By offering a program, you’ll join the partnership of federal and state organizations, universities, health care professionals, community organizations, and more—all working to reduce the burden of diabetes in the United States. Learn more about the National DPP’s diabetes prevention efforts. Visit What’s New?

If you think your organization should offer CDC-recognized lifestyle change programs, learn about the requirements for CDC recognition.


Tuomilehto J, Lindstrom J, Eriksson J, et al.; Finnish Diabetes Prevention Study Group. Prevention of type 2 diabetes mellitus by changes in lifestyle among subjects with impaired glucose tolerance. N Engl J Med 2001; 344:1343–1350. Available at http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11333990

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