In recognition of November’s designation as National Diabetes Awareness Month, the YMCA of the Capital Area encourages Baton Rouge residents to learn their risks for prediabetes and Type 2 diabetes and to take preventive steps to reduce their chances of developing the disease.

One in four Americans, or 86 million people, have prediabetes, up from 79 million in 2010, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Prediabetes is a condition in which a person’s blood glucose is elevated, but not high enough for a diabetes diagnosis.

Assess your risk for prediabetes and Type 2 diabetes with a test at YMCAbr.org/dpp. Factors that could put a person at risk for Type 2 diabetes include race, age, weight and activity level.

Basic lifestyle changes that help cut the risk for Type 2 diabetes include:

Eating fruits and vegetables daily

Eating fish, lean meats and poultry without skin

Aiming for whole grains with every meal

Being moderately active at least 30 minutes per day five days a week

Choosing water to drink instead of beverages with added sugar

The YMCA recommends residents speak to a doctor about diabetes risk factors, especially if they have a family history or are overweight.