The University of the District of Columbia (UDC) television studios, UDCtv, provides the Washington, DC area with programming geared to foster health, political and environmental awareness.  Dr. Katherine Marshall Woods hosts this UDCtv show entitled “A Healthy Mind” featuring guests from a myriad of professions lending information to promote healthy living and lifestyles.  Entries entitled: “A Healthy Mind” share these interviews.

UDC-TV A Healthy Mind

On April 29th, 2020, Dr. Dawanna James-Holly, was invited onto the show to discuss her journey of being diagnosed and living with diabetes. On this episode Dr. Dawanna James Holly continues to share her story regarding adjusting to life as a diabetic and helps others navigate how to manage this condition day-to-day. Dr. James-Holly has dedicated over a decade to public health nutrition. She currently works with the Department of Agriculture to provide oversight of food safety research grants and food safety information products. 

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Dr. Marshall Woods: “Hello, my name is Dr. Katherine Marshall Woods, and your host for this episode of A Healthy Mind. The purpose of this show is to educate and inform the public regarding emotional health, from emotional disorders to social policies that affect healthy minds.”

“Dr. Dawanna Holly has joined us on the previous episode where she began to discuss her journey managing her diagnosis of diabetes. She shared her early health experiences, and continues to join us to share where she finds herself in the healing process. And, how she arrived at this place of health. Most recently, she has served in the federal government to provide oversight of food safety research grants and food safety research information products. Let’s welcome again, Dr. Dawanna Holly. Thank you again for joining us!” 

Dr. James-Holly: “Thank you, thank you for having me once again, I’m thrilled to be back!”

Dr. Marshall Woods: “Well, before we get started I just want to do a little recap here. You were on last segment talking about, the signs that you were experiencing, and symptoms specifically, of diabetes that you had. You articulated that the fast pace of your life caused you to just keep moving on. And, suddenly you found that your symptoms began to get worse that led you to the hospital; and you learned that if you hadn’t sought care at that time you may have ended up in a coma. And, luckily you were able to have healthcare professionals who knew what they were looking at and provided you a lot of information and guidance to be able to manage. And, when you were discharged you felt capable of going home and implementing your care independently.”

Dr. James-Holly: “Yes, yes, I was quite fortunate to be in a position where some of the training I had as a students, you know, just learning about diabetic management as in my earlier years in nutrition classes overtime. And also, the type of care I received it gave me diabetic education along with treatment. So, I was able to talk to certain types of specialist while I was there, I was able to meet one to one with nurses and talk about different types of injections, what needles look like; just given me a plethora of education around what it is I needed to know as a new diabetic. So, that has served me well.”

Dr. Marshall Woods:  “Mhmm, and I remember that you were mentioning, when you first got home and began to implement the medicine as well as nutrition, it was a bit overwhelming, it was a lot of information to take in. But, you also noted one thing that helped was it that you had support. And, who were those supports for you?”

Dr. James-Holly: “Well, I had my family. So I had my husband, my son, who is an adolescent. He was also very interested in knowing what I was doing and what happened to his mother. I had my mother; she was here to help me through the day-to-day struggles. Again, I think I mentioned to you, one of the symptoms I dealt with was blurry vision. And so, I was dealing with, I wasn’t able to drive myself anywhere. And, for someone who always drives themselves everywhere that in itself was a change. So, I had a supportive system, in terms of, mom needed to make sure I went to appointments. When I needed to get care, mom had to go with me and read paperwork, admission paperwork, and help me to understand where my insurance cards were. So, I went through that process as apart of my recovery, and it was nice to have that support at home.” 

Dr. Marshall Woods:  “So it sounds like once you were discharged from the hospital your symptoms, or all of your symptoms, were not freed up. That you weren’t resumed to be functioning at your previous way of living, that you still had blurry eye vision. And, so how long did it take for your health to get to a place where you felt more like yourself again?”

Dr. James-Holly: “So I think it took about a month or two. And, I have to say that was because I was constantly in, I was meeting with an internist, I was meeting with an endocrinologist right away, I was able to get on her schedule. And, they started to work with me to get me under control as soon as possible. I had a dietician, so I was rotating appointments throughout the week with all three of my specialist right away. I didn’t wait; I didn’t just work with one and not the other; I kept on a regimen with them all the way until now.”

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