Offer a DPP Lifestyle Change Program

Why Offer a Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP) Lifestyle Change Program

About 1 out of 3 American adults has prediabetes—that’s 88 million people. People with prediabetes are at higher risk of heart attack, stroke, and type 2 diabetes. Type 2 diabetes puts people at risk for many serious health problems, including:

  • Heart attack
  • Stroke
  • Blindness
  • Kidney failure
  • Loss of toes, feet, or legs

Fortunately, having prediabetes doesn’t guarantee a person will develop type 2 diabetes. Type 2 diabetes can be prevented. CDC-recognized diabetes prevention lifestyle change programs can help people prevent or delay type 2 diabetes and improve their overall health.

In addition to the obvious health benefits, here are some additional reasons to consider offering a DPP lifestyle change program from the CDC:

  • It's a proven, science-based program: Studies have shown that people with prediabetes who take part in a structured lifestyle change program and lose 5% to 7% of their body weight through healthier eating and 150 minutes of physical activity per week can cut their risk of developing type 2 diabetes by 58% (71% for people over 60 years old). Lifestyle change programs can reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke associated with prediabetes and improve participants’ overall health.
  • Increased visibility and credibility to your organization on the CDC website (upon program recognition from the CDC).
  • If you're an employer: You can help employees prevent or delay type 2 diabetes along with the associated conditions that can directly impact your business's bottom line.
  • If you're a healthcare professional: You'll increase access to evidence-based, CDC-led chronic disease prevention efforts and help patients improve their health through food and exercise-related behavioral changes. 


How to Start a DPP Lifestyle Change Program

Six steps to starting your own Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP) lifestyle change program:

  1. Find room in your budget to make sure the program is adequately resourced. Although Medicare covers CDC-recognized DPPs, many of the nation’s 84 million people are not covered by Medicare.
  2. Identify key staff members to administer and run the program. Pick staff members who are good with people and comfortable speaking in front of a group. Additionally, it is important to pick staff who will learn the CDC’s training materials thoroughly.
  3. Get trained to be a lifestyle coach. Sign up with a CDC-approved training program. 
    • Training for your Lifestyle Coaches (
    • Curricula and Handouts | NDPP | Diabetes | CDC
  4. Download and organize the materials . The up-to-date CDC-approved program materials are titled Prevent T2 and are available online. Given the high volume of information, it is best to organize the materials so that it is easy to reference for staff and participants.
  5. Locate a meeting space. Identify a location that works best for your staff and potential participants. Consider proximity to public transportation, such as bus stops or trolley stations, and other barriers to access that may affect a person’s likelihood to participate.
  6. Recruit patients. Find resources from the CDC on recruiting and retaining participants. For healthcare providers, consider pulling a list of patients with prediabetes from the practice’s electronic health records system. 

For more information on the National Diabetes Prevention Program, please visit the CDC's website at: