Diabetes education and management in Denver

The diabetes educators at the Presbyterian/St. Luke’s Diabetes Management Center are here to teach you about diabetes and understand the risks associated with the disease. Our goal is to help you effectively manage your diabetes, so you can continue to enjoy an active and satisfying lifestyle.

Patient-centered team approach

Under the supervision of your physician, a team of experts consisting of Certified Diabetes Educators provides the latest in diabetes treatment. Additionally, we encourage patients to bring a support person, such as a family member or friend, to class. The Diabetes Management Center works closely with your entire support network to provide an atmosphere of understanding and acceptance for everyone with diabetes, their families and others responsible for their care.

Symptoms of diabetes

Diabetes symptoms vary depending on the type you may have. Specifically, patients with Type 1 diabetes may display symptoms of unplanned weight loss, extreme thirst and frequent urination. Patients with Type 2 diabetes, however, may have no symptoms or may have the following:

Gestational diabetes usually has no symptoms. It is diagnosed with a glucose tolerance test ordered and/or administered by your doctor.

Diabetes self-management education and support

We are committed to providing the highest quality of diabetes self-management education based on the American Diabetes Association® Standards of Care. The diabetes program at Presbyterian/St. Luke’s is a recognized program under the American Diabetes Association® Education Recognition Program. To register for a class or individual session you must contact the Diabetes Management Center and let the scheduler know which class or individual session you need to attend. Cost for these programs will vary depending on your insurance provider, co-pay and deductible.

To register for a diabetes self-management class or individual session, call the Diabetes Management Center at (720) 754-6891.

We offer the following classes and individual sessions at the Diabetes Management Center:

  • New Diagnosis for Type 1 Diabetes—This class is a series of individualized sessions with a certified diabetes educator.
  • New Diagnosis for Type 2 Diabetes—This is a four-class series that is geared to newly diagnosed patients who have never had diabetes education. A nurse (and/or dietitian as needed) teaches this two-hour class based on your needs assessment.
  • Insulin Pump Therapy—This is a one on one session for those interested in insulin pump therapy. Demonstration of various pumps is done to help with pump selection. The first class includes an initial consultation and demonstration.
  • Insulin Management—Often, insulin doses need to be adjusted. At the Diabetes Management Center the educators work closely with the patient and physician to make the changes and assure the patient understands them.
  • Continuous Self-Blood Glucose Monitoring—At this appointment, a certified diabetes educator will connect the monitor device to you on your first visit. A second visit is scheduled a week later to remove the device and download the results, which are then reviewed with you; a copy of your results will be sent to your doctor.
  • Gestational Diabetes—This one-time, two-hour class includes instruction on monitoring your blood sugars, diet and medications. One follow-up visit is completed to ensure you understand the material.
  • Tune Up—For individuals who need a review of their self-management skills, you can schedule an appointment with a nurse or dietitian.
  • Medical Nutrition Therapy—If you would like assistance with meal planning, you can schedule an appointment with a dietitian.

Contact us Monday through Thursday between 8:00am and 4:00pm or Friday from 7:00am until 11:00am to schedule your appointment.

Diabetes FAQ

What is Type 1 diabetes?

Type 1 diabetes is a chronic illness that typically develops before the age of 30 but can develop at any age. In Type 1 diabetes, the body stops producing insulin, a hormone that regulates the amount of glucose (sugar) in the blood. Your body needs insulin to break down the carbohydrates that the body uses for energy. About 10 percent of people with diabetes have Type 1 diabetes.

Is there a cure for Type 1 diabetes?

Currently, there is no cure. However, it can be treated successfully by taking insulin. Continuous glucose monitors and insulin pumps have made it easier for people to manage their type 1 diabetes.

Should I follow a gluten-free diet if I’ve been diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes?

The only people who benefit from a gluten-free diet are those who have celiac disease or gluten sensitivity. Celiac disease is more common among people with Type 1 diabetes, but it is still a small percentage of people.

What is Type 2 diabetes?

Type 2 diabetes is also a chronic illness. It is usually diagnosed after age 30, but is also becoming more common in teens and young adults. The body is still making insulin, but it does not regulate correctly. Type 2 diabetes is due to an increase in insulin resistance. Risk factors include obesity, lack of exercise and family history of Type 2 diabetes. It can be treated with diet and exercise, oral medications and/or insulin. About 90% of people with diabetes has Type 2 diabetes.

Can I reverse my Type 2 diabetes?

Type 2 diabetes can be reversed or go into in remission if a person increases their physical activity, carefully monitors what they eat and loses weight (if not already at normal weight). Reversal or remission of Type 2 diabetes is defined as having normal blood sugars without taking any diabetes medications. It can be difficult to achieve this without some assistance. It is also important to note that Type 2 diabetes is progressive. This means that even if you are doing everything right, Type 2 diabetes could return as you age.

How many carbohydrates can I eat a day with Type 2 diabetes?

This depends on your height and weight, your blood glucose, and whether or not you are trying to lose weight. Our diabetes educators can work with you to create an individualized meal plan.

What is a healthy eating guideline for a person with Type 2 diabetes?

  • Choose fewer processed foods and eat more fruits, vegetables and whole grains.
  • Eat at least twice a day and ideally only when you are hungry.
  • Stay aware of your portion sizes and choose the appropriate amounts of food.

Does my insurance cover diabetes education?

In most cases, insurance does cover diabetes education. There might be limits to how many visits you can have with a diabetes educator. If you want to come in for diabetes education, call us at (720) 754-6891, so we can give you information to share with your insurance company.

Physician referrals

As an American Diabetes Association®-recognized center for diabetes education, we invite your physician to become familiar with the services we offer. We will work closely with your doctor to assist in managing your diabetes, as well as the required steps in referring you to our facility. Encourage your doctor to call with any questions he or she may have regarding our services.