Native Diabetes Wellness (health)


The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Native Diabetes Wellness Program, Division of Diabetes Translation, is pleased to announce the availability of an entertaining new novel for youth that combines mystery with health promotion messages about preventing type 2 diabetes. Coyote and the Turtle’s Dream is the first in a series of three books primarily for middle schoolers in American Indian and Alaska Native communities, though it may also appeal to a wider audience.

The book builds on storytelling traditions honored in the original Eagle Books series for younger children. Animal and human characters return with an expanded list of characters that includes family members, teachers, store owners, other residents of a small reservation town—and an elderly box turtle. Broadening the dialogue about preventing type 2 diabetes presented in the original books, Coyote and the Turtle’s Dream also introduces the character of Arianna, a young girl living with type 1 diabetes. Native youth and tribal leaders reviewed the book prior to publication and their comments are featured on the book cover and inside pages.

Type 2 diabetes is becoming more common everywhere, including American Indian and Alaska Native communities. Native Americans aged 10 to 19 are developing type 2 diabetes at higher rates than youth in other racial and ethnic groups of this age. In part because type 2 diabetes is often associated with being overweight or obese, many tribal communities are dedicated to engaging youth and families to reclaim traditional ways of health such as being physically active and eating healthy local foods. The Native Diabetes Wellness Program expresses deep appreciation to tribal leaders who early on recognized the need for stories about type 2 diabetes prevention and the many champions who ensure that the stories are remembered, retold, and talked about in communities across the country.

CDC’s Division of Diabetes Translation, through the Native Diabetes Wellness Program, supports culturally relevant initiatives for preventing type 2 diabetes in American Indian and Alaska Native communities. For more information about the book, and to order free copies, please visit call 1-800-CDC-INFO.