DRAWING WINNERS

To date, BEATDiabetes has given away over
$10,000 in money and prizes. 

Meet some of the people who have won BEATDiabetes Drawings. We hope their stories inspire you to follow in their footsteps and take charge of your health!

With the help of BEATDiabetes, Dr. Earl Pendleton successfully improved his blood sugar control and decreased his risk of diabetes complications. In doing so, he qualified for and was the lucky winner of the $1000 BEATDiabetes Drawing for Charlottesville area participants.

 

How long have you had Type 2 diabetes?

I was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes more than 20 years ago.

What has been the biggest challenge for you in dealing with diabetes?

My biggest challenge in dealing with diabetes is being consistent in counting carbs and portion sizes.

What changes have you made that have helped improve your blood sugar?

I have made a concerted effort to walk at least 2-3 miles every day and pay close attention to eating the right portion sizes.

How has the BEATDiabetes program helped you manage your diabetes?

The regular reminders to check my blood sugar has been most helpful. This has helped me to better manage my diabetes and maintain the big picture of the disease.

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What motivates you to make healthy choices?

I want to feel good, look good and live good!

What advice do you have for others trying to improve their diabetes control?

Improving your diabetes control is a must! It can be done with a mindset to work at it daily.

What do you plan to do with the $1000?

I plan to share it with my walking partner who motivates and inspires me to always believe that there is life after diabetes.

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My name is Luann Jones. I am 52 years old and grew up watching my grandmother, aunts, uncles and cousins from both of my parents’ sides of the family give themselves insulin shots.  I was absolutely terrified of becoming diabetic.  I still cannot stand the smell of wintergreen because that’s the type of alcohol my grandmother used when administering her shots. 🤢 

 

I have some medical background and knew the symptoms and signs of diabetes. I guess subconsciously I refused to recognize them.  On July 13, 2020 I went to the doctor because I was not feeling very well (vision problems and constant urination). My husband was being checked as well.  Our A1C’s were awful. Mine :14.8, his:14.0.  We were immediately placed on medication. With that and cutting down on sugar and sweets as well as switching to “Splenda”, I was able to bring my A1C down to 5.8 and my husbands to 7.0.  We have started walking in our neighborhood when weather permits and continue to battle the sweets. 

 

I honestly feel that the Beat Diabetes program helps keep me positive and on track.  The encouragement and information that is given by text is wonderful.  Winning the $1,000.00 drawing was a blessing and a Godsend.  Unfortunately, AEP already has placed their claim for it.  Lol.  Hang in there people!  We are not in this fight alone!!!   

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With the help of BEATDiabetes, Marie Phipps was able to keep her A1C at the target of under 7 for the past year, minimizing her risk of long-term complications of diabetes.

How long have you had Type 2 diabetes?

About 4 years. I have been able to manage it with metformin along with diet and exercise.

What has been the biggest challenge for you in controlling your diabetes?

The biggest challenge for me has been trying to figure out what to eat that won’t make my blood sugars go up - and having the willpower to avoid ice cream!

What changes did you make to improve your blood sugars?

I try to stay very busy around the house. I am always moving around and walking. I also am careful to watch what I eat and how much I eat, and I check my blood sugars regularly.

How has the BEATDiabetes program helped you manage your diabetes?

The texts have given me helpful advice about what to eat. The program also responded and answered some questions I texted them about diabetic diets.

What motivates you to get and stay healthy?

Diabetes and heart disease runs on both sides of my family, and some people have died at young ages. I want to take care of my health so I live long enough to see my 6 grandbabies grow-up, graduate from high school and college, get married, and have families of their own. I also want to avoid shots if possible.

What advice do you have for others trying to control their diabetes?

The key is having willpower. Don’t eat what you are not supposed to.

What do you plan to do with the $1000? I haven’t decided entirely. I will probably use it to give my grandbabies a special Christmas, especially since it has been a difficult year because of the pandemic.

With the help of BEATDiabetes, Richard Kelley was able to get his A1C to the target of under 7,

minimizing his risk of future diabetes complications.

How long have you had Type 2 diabetes?

The diabetes was first diagnosed around 1990!  With diet adjustments, it went into remission in less than a year or so with no medication, but then reappeared in 2000.

 

What has been the biggest challenge for you in controlling your diabetes? 
My body did not respond well, and I was traveling internationally to third world countries where nothing was “proper” for my diet. Various medications were tried alone or in combination to no success. The Mayo Clinic recommended I go on insulin, but I refused. I was into Stage Three Kidney failure.  I decided that I HAD to do something. It was now 5 years ago that I was with my son and he said, “Dad, while you are staying here, you are going on a gluten-free diet .” I kind of gave him a difficult time, but he charged ahead. In two days, my levels started to drop. I found a doctor trained to look at causes rather than symptoms. After evaluation he started adjusting my meds and lowering and getting me from 9 pills a day down to now two a day! I am just on 5 mg Glipizide twice a day!!!! And my readings this month are way down to low 120’s! Oh, and Mayo logged me as the first ever to reverse stage three kidney failure back to stage one!

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What changes did you make to improve your blood sugars?
In addition to the changes above, I am super motivated and walking! I walked 91 miles in May! I am walking less in this extreme heat, but still getting 1-4 miles a day! I know that I have a way to go, but with my current readings I am hopeful.

 

How has the BEATDiabetes program helped you manage your diabetes?

It has provided the little nudges during the day to keep me thinking… do I really want to do this particular thing? Maybe a cookie reward? NO! How about a black cherry instead? It has also reminded me to keep reading labels! So critical. We eat almost no processed foods!


What motivates you to get and stay healthy?
Being free! The lower numbers have been really encouraging!

 
What advice do you have for others trying to control their diabetes?
Get up and go! If I as an 82-year-old can walk 4 miles a day after requiring leg therapy for a year last year and almost not walking across the room, anyone can walk! Read labels! Don’t get discouraged!

What do you plan to do with the money you won in the BEATDiabetes drawing?

Probably use it for an end of year vacation!

With the help of BEATDiabetes, Roger was able to get his A1C to the target of under 7,

which minimizes his risk of long-term complications of diabetes, 

like blindness, kidney failure, and amputations.

How long have you had Type 2 diabetes?

I have had type 2 Diabetes for about 15 years now.  I knew I had it and asked to be tested, but I was stunned when the doctor verified my self-diagnosis.

 

What has been the biggest challenge for you in controlling your diabetes? 
The biggest challenge for me in controlling my diabetes has been forgetting my meds when I leave the house and not being able to afford some meds due to hitting my donut hole so early in the year and being forced to pay such huge costs for all my other meds such as my heart medications.  If it was not for The Health Wagon helping with my insulin at times I would be in serious trouble.

What changes did you make to improve your blood sugars?

I have had to make many changes in my lifestyle to try to keep my blood sugars at decent levels.  I have tried to eat healthier foods.  I try to exercise more, I try to take my meds as directed and I check blood sugars more often.

What is the most helpful part of the BEATDiabetes Program?

The BEAT Diabetes program has helped me in so many ways to get my numbers back on track.  I like the text each morning reminding me that it is time to check my blood sugar.  I really like the suggestions they provide on food, exercise and keeping up with my medications and reminding me that if I have a bad blood sugar it is not the end of the world and to get back on track.  I had not had an A1C under 7 in over 2 years.


What motivates you to get and stay healthy?
What motivates me to make healthier choices in my life is to stay as healthy as I can throughout my life.  I have other health conditions that high blood sugars has a direct effect on, such as heart disease and kidney disease.  My wife has been diagnosed with cancer a while back and I want to stay healthy to help her if needed.  I am involved with many Civic organizations, such as Lions Club and Shriners and I serve on many local boards and I would love to stay healthy enough so I can continue to serve my community.

What advice do you have for others trying to control their diabetes?
The best advice I can give I guess would be for any one with diabetes to learn all you can about the disease and follow your care providers recommendations.  Look for support groups in your area.  They are great motivations when you know you are not alone in your struggle to maintain healthy blood sugar levels.  Remember that in having Diabetes you have a lot of control in the disease progression.  You  cannot control a lot of major disease but you can this one by eating right, exercising, taking your meds, following your health providers instructions and remembering you can live a long life if you have a positive attitude in taking care of yourself.  The BEATDiabetes Program is a great way to get your life back on track!

 

What do you plan to do with the $1000?
I have not given a lot of thought to how I might spend the money.  I will probably put it back for a rainy day.  What a great Program BEATDiabetes is! What other program rewards you for taking care of yourself?

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With the help of BEATDiabetes, Chris Stidham was able to improve his blood sugar control, not only improving his health, but also earning an entry in the the $1000 BEATDiabetes Drawing which he went on to win. 

 

What has been the biggest challenge for you in controlling your diabetes? 
The biggest challenge for me was quitting the sweets, but I still have a piece every now and again...

What changes did you make to improve your blood sugars?
I cut back on a lot on the size of meals. Instead of super-sizing, I would have more of a kid’s meal. I also don’t eat after 6 pm. My thought is you can’t work it off sleeping.

What motivates you to get and stay healthy?
I have had many of my family die from diabetes, and I want to be there for my grandchildren.

What advice do you have for others trying to control their diabetes?
You need to take it one day at a time. You just didn’t wake up and get it, so you are not going to control it in one day. Set a reachable goal and stick to it.

 

What is the most helpful part of the BEATDiabetes Program?

I love the texts every day. Lots of ideas come from them. Plus, having a chance to win 1000 dollars is pretty good too!

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What do you plan to do with the money you won in the BEATDiabetes drawing?
I think I am going to start a savings account for each of my grandchildren so they will always remember their papaw.

When Will Moran saw his diabetes doctor this fall, he knew his A1C results were not going to be good. A new job which involved travel made it more difficult to eat healthy and exercise, and he had reverted to old habits. He wasn’t eating well or exercising regularly and had gained weight. His hemoglobin A1C came back at 8.2, well above the goal of under 7. Being in the health care field himself, he understood that the elevated A1C put him at increased risk for diabetic complications, including damage to his kidneys, eyes, nerves, and blood vessels. 

Will says that the A1C of 8.2 shocked him into action, and the BEATDiabetes program helped him to stay on track and achieve his goals. Texts from BEATDiabetes helped motivate him to eat better and to get back to exercising 3 times a week at the gym. Reminder texts helped him consistently take his medication. When he had his A1C rechecked, his hard work had paid off with an A1C that was impressively improved at 6.1!

For his efforts, he earned entry into the BEATDiabetes drawing which he won, but he says that biggest reward has been feeling healthier and younger. 

 

 

We caught up with Will to ask him a few questions about how he got his diabetes under control, what advice he has for others in the same situation, and what he plans to do with his winnings. 

What has been the biggest challenge for you in controlling your diabetes? 
I had a hard time eating healthy and exercising while traveling for my new job.

What changes did you make to improve your blood sugars?
I made great effort to improve my diet by cooking healthy instead of eating out. I also changed my exercise routine to fit my new work schedule. 

What motivates you to get and stay healthy?
Observing people who are not healthy and are my age, but look and act much older.

What advice do you have for others trying to control their diabetes?
You really won't believe how great you feel, how much energy you have, and how much younger you feel if you eat right and exercise regularly.

What do you plan to do with the money you won in the drawing?
I am restoring a Jeep and some of the money will help buy parts. 

When Rob White started the BEATDiabetes program, his hemoglobin A1C was 11. With his busy schedule, he found it difficult to remember to consistently take his diabetes medications, and he was frequently missing doses. He says that the reminders from BEATDiabetes were invaluable in helping him to stay on top of his medication regimen and blood sugar checks. “I get very busy.” he says. “It’s always go, go, go, but with the phone beeping, it forces me to stop and do what I need to do to take care of my diabetes.” With the help of regularly taking his medications, along with watching his diet, Rob was able to improve his hemoglobin A1C from 11 to 8.3, significantly improving his health and reducing his risk of future diabetic complications.

 

We caught up with Rob to ask him a few questions about how he got his diabetes under control, what advice he has for others in the same situation, and what he plans to do with the money he won in the BEATDiabetes drawing. 

What has been the biggest challenge for you in controlling your diabetes? 
Remembering to take my medication.

What changes did you make to improve your blood sugars?
I have been watching what I eat and drink.

What motivates you to get and stay healthy?
I want to live a better life and to live longer.

What advice do you have for others trying to control their diabetes?
Eat properly, stay on your medications, and have lots of patience.

What do you plan to do with the money you won in the BEATDiabetes drawing?
Take a little vacation. 

Like most people who have had Type 2 diabetes for 20+ years, Larry Morris has had his ups and downs with the disease. Last fall was one of the low points. His insurance company had required him to switch to a less effective medication, his A1C had risen to 9.1, and he was feeling discouraged. With the help of his doctor, who successfully argued with the insurance company to get him back on his previous regimen, and the BEATDiabetes program, which provided frequent advice and encouragement, he has been able to get and keep his A1C under 7.

We caught up with Larry to ask him a few questions about how he controls his blood sugars, what advice he has for others with diabetes, and what he plans to do with his drawing winnings. 

 

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How have you gotten your blood sugars under control?
I have been working hard to take care of myself and make good choices. I try to exercise 5 times a week and eat healthy foods. Over the past couple years, I have made a real effort to try to lose weight and have lost over 60 pounds. I would like to lose 30 more, but have hit a plateau where it is harder to make progress. It is frustrating, but I will keep working at it.


How was the BEATDiabetes program helpful in controlling your diabetes? 

With diabetes, sometimes there are good days and sometimes there are bad days. The BEATDiabetes texts gave me encouragement on the days when it was tough. It was a voice encouraging me to persist and not give up.

 

What motivates you to get and stay healthy?
I want to be around for my family. I want to be there for my kids and grandkids and great-grandkids.

What advice do you have for others working to control their diabetes?
Do what you need to do. Take your medicine. Check your blood sugar. Exercise. Don’t give up.

Diabetes is a hard disease, but it doesn’t have to control you. You can control it.


What do you plan to do with the money you won in the BEATDiabetes Drawing?
We are going to add it to our vacation fund. It will allow us to extend our upcoming vacation to Florida and Georgia. 

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Glenda Davis has had diabetes for 20 years, but says that for the majority of that time, she was in denial. She didn’t have a family history of diabetes and didn’t want to believe that she had it, so she ignored it and continued to eat whatever she wanted despite requiring a growing number of diabetes medications, including insulin. However, a diagnosis of Stage 2 Chronic Kidney Disease provided a serious wake-up call and forced Glenda to confront the damage uncontrolled diabetes was doing to her body. She didn’t want to end up on dialysis and decided to get serious about taking care of her diabetes and overall health. With the help of a plant-based diet, a supportive doctor, and the BEATDiabetes program, she has lost 63 pounds and improved her A1C from 9.2 to 6.9. This improvement in her blood sugars will significantly reduce her risk of future diabetes complications and should prevent further diabetic damage to her kidneys.

We caught up with Glenda to ask her a few questions about how she controls her blood sugars, what advice she has for others with diabetes, and what she plans to do with the money she won in the BEATDiabetes Drawing.

 

What changes did you make to help improve your blood sugars?
I made big changes in my diet. I started eating a plant-based diet. I didn’t eat any meat for 5 months and now eat it in only small amounts. This has helped me to lose 63 pounds over the past year, and I have been able to improve my blood sugars and come off most of my diabetes medications. Now I am just on metformin.


How was the BEATDiabetes program helpful in controlling your diabetes? 

The tips were very helpful. They taught me some things that I hadn’t learned in diabetes education. The chance to earn rewards also provided some additional motivation – money is always a good motivator!

 

What motivates you to get and stay healthy?
I want to be healthy and live longer, and I don’t want to end up on dialysis.

What advice do you have for others working to control their diabetes?
You need to wake up and realize that you have this disease and that it is a progressive one. If you keep eating things that are not good for you, you will damage your body. The complications of diabetes are scary, but you can avoid them if you make the effort to take care of yourself.

What do you plan to do with the money you won in the BEATDiabetes Drawing?
I am going to use it for a vacation since I haven’t had one in a while. I am still deciding where I want to go.

With the help of BEATDiabetes, Michelle Washington was able to maintain excellent glycemic control this year despite the challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic.

How long have you had Type 2 diabetes?

I was diagnosed 2 years ago.

 

What has been the biggest challenge for you in dealing with diabetes?

The biggest challenge for me was cutting carbs and portion sizes.

 

What changes have you made that have helped improve your blood sugar?

I am exercising 3 times a week and eating healthier foods.

 

Why did you decide to sign-up for BEATDiabetes?

I felt I needed extra motivation and support to get my diabetes under control.

 

How has the BEATDiabetes program helped you manage your diabetes?

The reminders to check my blood sugar has been a big part of my journey to controlled levels.

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What motivates you to make healthy choices?

I want to maintain a way of life that is healthy and fun.

 

What advice do you have for others trying to improve their diabetes control?

Making small changes to your diet and exercise can lead to bigger, long lasting changes.

 

What do you plan to do with your winnings?

I am going to use it for an after-covid girls self-care trip.