Classes set for people wanting to avoid diabetes

The fight against diabetes is expanding.

Washington State University Extension is bringing back its National Diabetes Prevention Program this fall with classes in Aberdeen, Elma and, for the first time, Ocean Shores.

“This program has been proven effective in delaying diabetes by encouraging participants to increase their physical activity level and lose a modest amount of weight as well,” reads a release from Chris Koehler of WSU Extension Grays Harbor, a member of the Extension faculty who coordinates the Diabetes Prevention Program.

The program is available at no charge for people at risk of developing diabetes.

“We will accept donations to help off—set the program costs,” the release states.

It lasts one year: 16 weekly classes followed by classes every other week for two months then once a month for six months.

“This program covers a variety of subjects including: healthy eating habits, motivational techniques, suggested ways to include light physical activity and tips on how to manage stress,” the release states. “The group setting helps provide support for all participants as you learn that others are facing similar lifestyle challenges.

“Sometimes change can be daunting, but when you are with peers learning to make some of the same choices, it becomes easier. Maybe even fun. Together the group members can celebrate successes and find ways to overcome obstacles.”

Registration is required for all classes. Registration deadline is Oct. 11. To register for the program, or for more information, call Chris Koehler at 360-482-2934 or send an email to To see if you’re at risk, go to our website:

The classes meet in the following times in these cities:

Aberdeen: 5:30 to 6:30 p.m., Tuesdays, starting Oct. 15.

Elma: 5:30 to 6:30 p.m., Wednesdays, starting Oct. 16.

Ocean Shores: 10 to 11 a.m., Fridays, starting Oct. 18.

“It is an expensive program to run, so we want to have folks who are at risk for developing diabetes and actually want to make a lifestyle change,” Koehler said in an email. “Not an easy feat, but a rewarding one.”