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Success Story

Al Emerick is a busy man best known as a radio voice-over talent, who has been featured in thousands of advertisements, and as a TV spokesman for a prominent local car dealership. And those auto commercials are just his hobby! However if you talk to Al off camera, the biggest endorsement he’s going to give is for Northeast Florida Endocrine and Diabetes Associates (NEFEDA).

Al was diagnosed at 18 with high blood pressure but that never slowed him down. His upbeat and outgoing personality made him perfect for the airwaves and he can be found in the studio doing a voice-over one day and on a car lot in front of a camera the next. However, like all of us have experienced at one time or another, Al came into a few hard years after his mother passed away and the recession began. As business became exceedingly stressful, Al put on weight and his unhealthy eating habits and anxiety began to take their toll.

Not feeling well, Al decided to see his primary care doctor. Blood tests revealed he had diabetes and that’s when Al chose NEFEDA.

“I met with my NEFEDA doctor and it changed my life,” says Al. “He was direct with me and I was direct with him. We went over everything that would be involved in fighting diabetes and I knew I could count on him and NEFEDA for whatever I needed. I really liked the fact that they had so many resources at their disposal. There’s no other practice out there that’s better equipped to help patients.”

Al followed through with his treatment plan and made a genuine commitment to his health. In fact, he got in the best shape of his life. It was then, after consulting with his NEFEDA doctor, that Al set his sites on an incredibly ambitious goal. He wanted to run a marathon.

Al worked with his doctor to create an initial exercise plan, discuss better eating decisions and, when the time came, learned how to monitor his blood sugars during long runs. Months later, the hard work and dedication paid off. A champion in anyone’s book, Al crossed the marathon finish line and accomplished what previously seemed to be an impossible goal.

Al is a board member of the American Diabetes Association. His advice to recently diagnosed or “pre-diabetic” patients is simple - “Admit that diabetes is serious and can be deadly. Accept that you can’t take it on alone and make an appointment with a NEFEDA doctor as soon as you can. You need support from your family and the quicker you get care you need the better your odds of success. The good news, if you follow your doctor’s advice, there’s no reason a diabetes diagnosis can’t lead you to being healthier than you’ve been in years…or even decades. I’m living proof of that!”

PATIENT PRIVACY INFO                                          © 2009, Northeast Florida Endocrine Diabetes Thyroid Center. All rights reserved.