“Can I take off my shoes now,” said a smiling Sherri Shepherd as she walked in the door.
The silver Steve Madden heels were killing her feet after the long afternoon of appearances.
The actress and co-host of ABC’s The View had just wrapped up a long signing for her new book, “Plan D How to lose weight and beat diabetes”.
She took some time to rest her feet and talked with staff and members of Baylor’s Diabetes Health and Wellness Institute (DHWI) about being diagnosed with type 2 diabetes.
“Getting diabetes probably saved my life,” Shepherd said.
The 46-year old-actress has lost 40 pounds over the last few years. She used to take multiple medications to manage her diabetes, but has now changed her diet and has started to exercise more regularly.
“Diabetes isn’t about I have to fit into a bikini in a couple months, you have to change your lifestyle because it’s a complete circle of health.”
Making those changes isn’t easy, Shepherd says. It takes discipline and a strong support system. You also need to be strong enough to admit you have a problem.
“Most people we see are ashamed they have diabetes,” said Connie Dominguez, a health and wellness educator on the staff at the Baylor Diabetes Health and Wellness Institute.
“That is the first thing we work on with patients when they walk in the door, overcoming being ashamed,” she added.
Shepherd says she was ashamed too.
In fact she was afraid to tell anyone on ‘The View’ that she had the disease. It took becoming a mother for her to make the dramatic life change.
“For me it was my son, it was me looking at him and saying I don’t want to leave him motherless, and nobody is going to be able to care for my son like I can care for my son.”
You can help many others make that change.
The Diabetes Health and Wellness Institute is holding a 5K Walk/Run on October 26, 2013
It’s a family fun event that raises awareness and funds for the center. All the proceeds from the event directly benefit programs and services at DHWI.
Click and learn more about how to you can take part.