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Tucsonan uses lifestyle treatment plan to reverse diabetes without surgery or medication

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Woman measuring her stomach

TUCSON (KVOA) - More than 37 million people suffer from diabetes in the U.S. with 695,000 in Arizona.

Every year, 41,000 people are diagnosed in the state. There are even more people have it without knowing it.

In preparation of Diabetes Alert Day on Tuesday, one Tucson man is sharing his story as a way to help others.

Gilbert Ybarra was diagnosed with diabetes after a hospital visit in October 2020.

Ybarra took the diagnosis as a wakeup call and using a lifestyle treatment plan called Virta. He lost 120 pounds and completely reversed his diabetes without surgery or medication.

Now he wants to be an example for others to show it is not too late to change things around for the better.

"You want to make sure where you are," he said. "And in my case, even though I knew I was not going down the right path initially, it really brought it to light seeing those numbers and really make myself realize I need to make a conscious effort to make a change in it."

Thirty Americans die every hour from diabetes and there are more than 420 amputations per day due to the disease.

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