Free classes open to the public


The Knox County Health Department’s (KCHD) next Diabetes Management Series takes place Thursdays, Oct. 5, 12 and 19, from 6 to 7 p.m. in the KCHD auditorium, 140 Dameron Ave. KCHD offers the free, three-part series quarterly to help those affected by the disease.


“We go beyond diet, medications and exercise to teach participants valuable management tools and the science to help them recognize what affects blood sugar levels,” said Shanthi Appelo, KCHD nutritionist and registered dietitian. “As always, we encourage participants to bring their spouse, caregiver or friend to the classes because a strong support system can make a world of difference.”


Those with Type 2 diabetes or pre-diabetes are encouraged to attend. Parking is free. Those interested should call 865-215-5170 or visit to register.


Having diabetes is a risk factor for developing serious health complications including heart disease, blindness, kidney failure and lower-extremity amputations. In 2014, it was estimated that 10.5 percent of Knox County adults (18+ years) have been diagnosed with the disease. Diabetes is the seventh leading cause of death in the U.S. and the eighth leading cause of death in Knox County. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, if current trends continue, as many as 1 out of 3 U.S. adults could have diabetes by 2050.


Due to the prevalence of this disease, KCHD also provides several prevention programs aimed at reducing diabetes rates, including the Nutrition Education Activity Training (N.E.A.T.) after-school program, the walking school bus program, worksite wellness initiatives, breastfeeding promotion and advocacy, community engagement programs, and others.