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A California podiatric surgeon, Dr. Bill
Releford has been practicing for more
than two decades. A firm supporter of
diabetes awareness, Dr. Bill Releford
founded the Black Barbershop Health
Outreach Program in 2007 to provide
diabetes screening at African-American-
owned barbershops across the nation.
An estimated 2.7 million African-American
men 20 years old and older have a form of
diabetes. This number reflects 11.4 percent
of black men in the United States, of which
one-third are unaware that they suffer from
the illness. A deadly disease if not managed
properly, diabetes also serves as a gateway
for other severe ailments, such as blindness,
kidney failure, and cardiovascular disease.
Among the leading cause of diabetes in
this demographic is obesity.
To help prevent diabetes, a person should
drink more water. Carrying a water bottle at
all times encourages more consumption,
which helps a person feel full and avoid
consuming unnecessary calories from juice
and sugary beverages. In addition, the
director of the National Diabetes Education
Program suggests sharing desserts and
passing up starchy foods that can add to
the risk of diabetes.