Saturday May 1, 2021 from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. EST


Virtual! Join from anywhere in the country! Attend this event without leaving the comfort of your own home.


General Admission $20
General Ticket Price $25

About the Let’s End Diabetes – Type 2 Diabetes (T2D) Conference

Diabetes is a successful disease. Diabetes or prediabetes affects 1 in 3 Canadians and living with this disease means being at risk for blindness, a heart attack, stroke, or kidney failure.

Learning to manage or reduce risk is one step closer to ending the success of diabetes.

On May 1st, 2021, Diabetes Canada is proud to present its first national virtual conference to support the close to 11.5 million Canadians affected by diabetes or prediabetes. The Take Control: Let’s End Diabetes Type 2 Conference will feature leading experts who will share the latest information to help improve care and self-management tips for those living with type 2 diabetes.

Register now! By joining us, you will have access to:

  • 20+ Expert Speakers
  • Live Exhibitor Tradeshow
  • Ask the Experts Panel
  • International Learning Lounge
  • Regional Community Showcase
  • Virtual Games, Prizes and More!

This year's Take Control: Let's End Diabetes Together Type 2 Conference offers Canadians impacted by type 2 diabetes a chance to be inspired, learn and connect. Register TODAY!

Sponsors & Donors


Thank you to

United Way Centrade

Diabetes Canada Auditorium - Agenda

All presentations are in Eastern Standard Time (EST)

11:00 AM – 11:30 AM

Exhibitor Tradeshow Opens

11:35 AM – 12:05 PM

Understanding Type 2 Diabetes: Laying the Foundation for Successful Self-Management

Shelley Jones became a Registered Nurse in 1982 and has spent the last half of her career working and volunteering in the field of diabetes care as a Certified Diabetes Educator. She is innovative, creative, and compassionate with a passion for changing diabetes. She pioneered the role of the Outreach Diabetes Case Manager embedded into community practices in New Brunswick leading to placement of 15 Diabetes Case Managers supporting Primary Care and their patients living with diabetes across the province.

Shelley has been involved in research, policy, and educational initiatives within the public healthcare system and as a consultant for industry Advisory Boards and expert committees, developing and delivering educational programs for patients, Healthcare Providers, and the community. She has held leadership roles within the Diabetes Canada Professional Section, is a past member of the Diabetes Canada Board of Directors and continues to be an active Diabetes Canada volunteer.

Shelley Jones

Millions of people in Canada and around the world are living with or affected by diabetes yet many still lack insight into what does or does not work in our bodies to take us down this path. It is my hope that by the end of this discussion participants will have a better idea of what is going on inside our bodies that contributes to the development and complicated journey with type 2 diabetes and be better armed in their ability to self manage what I define as a metabolic, inflammatory, vascular disease.

12:05 PM - 12:35 PM

Simplifying Complicated Diabetes Medication

Dr Kim is a general practitioner and a clinical assistant professor in the Department of Family Medicine at University of Calgary. He has a special interest in chronic disease, especially in diabetes, metabolic syndrome, and chronic migraine.

He graduated from a medical school in South Africa and has been working as a GP in Alberta since 2009, and also as an ER physician in rural Alberta. He completed a post-graduate diploma in diabetes in 2012. He works as a peer reviewer and editorial board member for numerous internationally recognized medical journals, including the Canadian Journal of Diabetes.

Within Diabetes Canada, his roles include steering committee member for the Clinical Practice Guidelines, and current co-chair of the Primary Care Special Interest Group. He has also been a scientific planning committee member for the annual Diabetes Canada/Canadian Society of Endocrinology and Metabolism (CSEM) Professional Conference.

He is also heavily involved with respiratory medicine, and is a board member of the College of Family Physicians of Canada’s Respiratory Medicine Committee, and Family Physician Airway Group of Canada. He is also an active food and restaurant blogger.

Dr. James W. Kim
MBBCh, PgDip

This session is aimed to simplify the complicated diabetes medications and will be highlighting the importance collaboration with the allied health care professionals, especially the pharmacists.

12:35 PM - 1:20 PM


Be sure to check out the Diversity Lounge, Industry Knowledge Exchange Stage, Exhibitor Tradeshow & Regional Community Showcase

1:20 PM - 1:50 PM

The Psychology of Type 2 Diabetes: “What’s the Big Deal, I Feel Fine," Right?

Dr. Vallis is a registered health psychologist based in Halifax. He is a health behaviour change consultant and associate professor in Family Medicine at Dalhousie University in Nova Scotia. His main area of expertise is adult health psychology, with an emphasis on obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular risk and gastroenterology.

He spends most of his time training healthcare providers in behaviour change for chronic disease management. He regularly supervises clinical and academic students at Dalhousie, and is active in research on motivation, behavioural change and adaptation to chronic disease. He consults nationally as well as internationally, and is heavily involved in academic publications, journal editing, and clinical practice guidelines (2020 and 2006 Canadian Clinical Practice Guidelines for the Management of Obesity and 2018, 2013, 2004 Diabetes Canada Clinical Practice Guidelines for the Prevention and Management of Diabetes in Canada). He was recently awarded a Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal by the Government of Canada on the recommendation of Diabetes Canada.

Dr. Michael Vallis
PhD R. Psych

Dr. Shepherd is a health psychologist working in Primary Health Care with Nova Scotia Health in Halifax. Her PhD is from Simon Fraser University in Burnaby, B.C. She specializes in chronic disease self-management and provides psychological services to patients with various chronic diseases, including diabetes, inflammatory bowel disease, and obesity. Her research interests include chronic disease management and disease-based distress, health behaviour change, and stress and coping.

Tiffany Shepherd
PhD, R. Psych.

Type 2 diabetes can be tricky. At the beginning you usually feel OK by the time you start feeling bad, the disease has progressed. Best outcomes are associated with disease acceptance, treatment acceptance, and readiness to self-manage. This presentation will review how to deal with the emotional challenges of type 2 diabetes and maintain motivated about your self-care.

1:50 PM - 2:20 PM

Mastering Meal Planning: work smart, not hard in the kitchen

Emily Campbell is a registered dietitian and certified diabetes educator with a Masters of Science in Foods and Nutrition. Emily is the owner of Kidney Nutrition where she specializes in renal and diabetes nutrition and helps clients understand how nutrition plays an important role in managing kidney disease and diabetes. This helps her clients navigate the complex world of food and nutrition and teaches them how food can be delicious and nutritious while achieving their health and nutrition goals.

Emily knows nutrition can be confusing and complex; but it does not need to be. She has many years of experience working with individuals with kidney disease and diabetes and is passionate about making healthy eating easy to understand, delicious and nutritious. As a dietitian, Emily loves to debunk myths to promote a balanced diet and make connections with her clients that engages them in their health and nutrition.

Emily Campbell

Nutrition plays an important role in managing our blood glucose levels and helping to reduce risk of conditions associated with diabetes like high blood pressure or kidney disease. A meal plan can help you plan what to eat to help you get the nutrition you need. Meal planning helps save time, money and stress in the kitchen.

2:20 PM - 3:20 PM


Be sure to check out the Diversity Lounge, Industry Knowledge Exchange Stage, Exhibitor Tradeshow & Regional Community Showcase

3:20 PM - 3:50 PM

Living La Vida Low Carb: Is a Low-Carb Lifestyle Right for Me?

Colleen Rogers is a certified diabetes educator with expertise in nutrition and adult diabetes education. She has more than10 years of experience, primarily as a clinical dietitian for St. Boniface Hospital and several other clinics in Winnipeg. Colleen has been a professional member and volunteer of Diabetes Canada for 15 years. With a specialty in nutrition counselling, she works with clients of different cultural backgrounds and from across all stages of adult life.

Colleen Rogers

What is a low-carb diet? Join us as we review the safety and possible benefits of choosing a lower-carbohydrate diet. Learn practical dietary tips to get started. Bonus: intermittent fasting 101.

3:50 PM - 4:20 PM

Good News: Diabetes Heart and Kidney Complications Can Be Prevented

Dr. Ally P. H. Prebtani is an internist and endocrinologist at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ont., and a full professor of medicine with the Division of Endocrinology & Metabolism, Department of Medicine. He is the founder and director of the McMaster University Internal Medicine Global Health Program and the founder of the Endocrinology & Metabolism Residency Training Program where he was director for nearly 10 years. He is actively involved in several roles at the university and outside of the university, including teaching, advocacy work, clinical work, research and administration at both the undergraduate and postgraduate levels.

Dr. Prebtani is currently on the Expert Committee for the Diabetes Canada Clinical Practice Guidelines and on the task force for the Tools Implementation for Hypertension Education Canada and is also the chair of the Endocrine Hypertension Subgroup, Clinical Practice Guidelines Task Force for Hypertension Canada. He is a member of the Cancer Care Ontario (CCO) Clinical Template Development Working Group for Thyroid Ultrasound Reporting. He is a consultant and co-founder for the South Asian Diabetes Chapter of Diabetes Canada. Dr. Prebtani is also the Section Editor, Endocrinology & Metabolism, McMaster Textbook of Medicine.

Dr. Ally Prebtani

By the end of this session, you will learn about the effective strategies to take charge of and prevent the heart and kidney complications of diabetes with lifestyle and simple, safe medications.

4:20 PM - 5:25 PM


Be sure to check out the Diversity Lounge, Industry Knowledge Exchange Stage, Exhibitor Tradeshow & Regional Community Showcase

5:25 PM - 5:55 PM

Type 2 Diabetes Remission Now and in the Future

Jim Johnson is a professor in the Department of Cellular and Physiological Sciences, and the Department of Surgery at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver. His laboratory is housed in the Diabetes Research Group at the Life Sciences Institute, where he is now deputy director.

A leader in the fundamental biology of pancreatic islets, insulin action, diabetes, and their connections to co-morbidities including cancer, Professor Johnson is the author of more than135 peer-reviewed articles since starting in 2000. He is editor in chief of the journal Islets, and has won several awards, including top diabetes researcher under 45 by the Canadian Diabetes Association (now Diabetes Canada) in 2016.

In 2016, Professor Johnson co-founded of the Institute for Personalized Therapeutic Nutrition in Vancouver, and is board chair of this non-profit dedicated to research, clinical care, and advocacy for people employing personalized diets to decrease type 2 diabetes.

His greatest passion is training the next generation of scientists, and many of his former trainees hold academic faculty positions or are senior scientists in industry.

James D. Johnson

Scientists used to think that type 2 diabetes was always a progressive disease in which insulin production was permanently broken. Emerging research points to the surprising resilience of insulin-producing cells. Professor Johnson will review evidence that inspires hope for a future when all individuals living with type 2 diabetes can be offered remission as a treatment goal.

5:55 - 6:00 PM

Closing Remarks

Gail MacNeill

Industry Knowledge Exchange Auditorium - Agenda

All presentations are in Eastern Standard Time (EST)

12:40- 1:10 pm

Fixing Dad

The story began in 2013 when brothers Anthony and Ian Whitington decided to make a project of 'Fixing' their dad's ill health. Being documentary filmmakers they wanted to film the whole journey and so launched a crowd funding campaign to make this happen. In 2014 they received support from the general public, including one vital and significant donation of £24,000 from the Paula Carr Diabetes Trust in Kent. Without the early kindness of these people who cared about Fixing Dad and its early potential to inspire others, Fixing Dad may never have got off the ground.

Anthony and Geoff Whitington

Join Anthony and Geoff Whitington stars of Fixing Dad, the BBC acclaimed story about one father’s extraordinary battle with type 2 diabetes and how his two sons helped reverse it...and how their success now offers hope to millions.

2:25 PM - 2:50 PM

Taking Care of Your Diabetes—Glucose Monitoring Can Help!

Lori Berard is certified diabetes educator (CDE) with expertise in diabetes education, management and clinical research. She is currently an international consultant in diabetes management and clinical research operations. She was the nurse manager at the WRHA Health Sciences Centre Winnipeg Diabetes Research Group, and a faculty member at the University of Manitoba Department of Medicine Section of Endocrinology until July 2017. As a CDE, she has more than 30 years of experience in the area of diabetes and continues to work in the community as a Diabetes Nurse Clinician/Educator at the Wellness Institute Seven Oaks General Hospital in Winnipeg. She remains actively involved in many research and educational initiatives with numerous presentations and publications. Lori has been a professional member and major volunteer of Diabetes Canada for more than 25 years and has extensive experience with the Clinical Practice Guidelines. She has received many honours and awards related to her work in diabetes.

Lori Berard
Nurse Consultant
    Follow this session and learn how to:
  • Understand the different ways glucose control is measured.
  • Determine how glucose monitoring could help in your diabetes care plan.
  • Integrate a glucose monitoring plan that works for you.

Beaker to Bedside: The Discovery of Insulin and Beyond

Grant Maltman is a graduate from The University of Western Ontario and has nearly 25 years experience in the cultural resource management and heritage presentation field. His journey started at Sir Frederick G. Banting Secondary School when, as a student, he presented Diabetes Canada with a cheque from the student body for the development of Banting House museum. Drawn to the diverse collection Banting House held, the history and the impact of the discovery of insulin on the world, it seemed a worthy project for the student body to support.

He has proudly served as the curator of Banting House National Historic Site of Canada for the last 23 years. In addition to securing the designation of Banting House as a national historic site, he served as a historical consultant for the Royal Canadian Mint’s coin commemorating Banting as Canada’s first Nobel Prize recipient and the CBC production, The Greatest Canadian Contest.

Grant Maltman
Curator of the Banting House National Historic Site of Canada

Historians and scientists have deemed the discovery of insulin to be “the most significant event in the history of Canadian medical science”. For most Canadians, the discovery of insulin reflects a specific moment in time – the summer of 1921. This presentation will provide a brief overview of the history of diabetes research, from its earliest recording to the discovery of insulin and it’s impact.

4:25 - 4:55 pm

Beyond Banting: From insulin to islet transplants, Canada's ongoing contribution to diabetes research

Krista Lamb is a writer, communications professional and podcast producer.

She is the producer and host of the Diabetes Canada Podcast, which won the Canadian Podcast Award for Outstanding Health and Fitness Series in 2020. She also hosts the From Beta Cells to Bicycles podcast for the BC Diabetes Research Network and the Actions on Diabetes Podcast with Diabetes Action Canada. Throughout her career, she has written extensively about health and research topics and she currently provides communications support for a wealth of Canadian not-for-profit organizations.

Krista Lamb

Since Sir Frederick Banting’s discovery of insulin at the University of Toronto in 1921, Canadian scientists have remained on the frontlines of the development of new treatments for diabetes, and the quest for a cure. Around the globe, people with diabetes are benefiting from breakthroughs with a Canadian connection. Islet transplants, GLP-1 agonist medications, and a better understanding of the development of type 2 diabetes in children from remote Indigenous communities—all of this and more has come from Canada. Author Krista Lamb shares stories about the remarkable scientists from across the country who are building on Banting’s legacy.

4:55 PM - 5:05 PM

Take a Break with WeStretch!

Stretching just 20 minutes a day has been proven to lower blood glucose levels. The WeStretch app is a customizable stretching platform created to get you moving safely, anytime, anywhere, while tracking your progress. You set the time and Ada, our instructor, will demonstrate every pose, you will never get the same routine twice and with over 5,000 poses you will eventually move every joint in every direction. Other than helping to reduce blood glucose, daily stretching increases mobility, improves balance, aids with stress reduction, increases cardiovascular health and decreases pain. Try stretching you can succeed at with WeStretch: the app that moves you.

6:00 PM - 6:30 PM

Ask the Experts Panel

Lori Berard is certified diabetes educator (CDE) with expertise in diabetes education, management and clinical research. She is currently an international consultant in diabetes management and clinical research operations. She was the nurse manager at the WRHA Health Sciences Centre Winnipeg Diabetes Research Group, and a faculty member at the University of Manitoba Department of Medicine Section of Endocrinology until July 2017. As a CDE, she has more than 30 years of experience in the area of diabetes and continues to work in the community as a Diabetes Nurse Clinician/Educator at the Wellness Institute Seven Oaks General Hospital in Winnipeg. She remains actively involved in many research and educational initiatives with numerous presentations and publications. Lori has been a professional member and major volunteer of Diabetes Canada for more than 25 years and has extensive experience with the Clinical Practice Guidelines. She has received many honours and awards related to her work in diabetes.

Lori Berard
Nurse Consultant

Michael Boivin is a clinical pharmacist consultant, continuing education developer and president of CommPharm Consulting Inc. In 2009, he left full-time pharmacy practice to pursue a career in continuing education and consulting. He has developed more than 500 accredited continuing-education activities for pharmacists, family physicians, specialists and allied health-care professionals.

Michael Boivin
Bsc. Phm, RPH, CDE

Born and raised in Toronto, Rowena Leung is a Toronto-based Registered Dietitian and Certified Diabetes Educator. Be it individualized counseling or group education sessions, Rowena’s goal is to provide practical and tangible nutrition tips for her clients. Rowena is focused on providing patient centered care and is a cheerleader for each and every one of her patients. Rowena is optimistic, approachable, friendly, energetic and makes recommendations that are realistic and achievable for her clients. Rowena recently became a mother to a baby girl. You may also catch her walking her mini golden doodle in and around the city. Rowena also loves to run outdoors and enjoys a Reformers Pilates class from time to time.

Rowena Leung

Dr. Tom Elliott obtained his medical degree (MBBS) in 1982 from the University of Queensland, Australia. In 1985, he moved to Canada, where he completed his core specialist internal medicine training at the University of British Columbia (UBC). From 1989 to 1991, Dr. Elliott took advanced training in diabetes at the University of London, UK. In 1991, he obtained sub specialist certification in Endocrinology & Metabolism (including diabetes) from the Royal College of Physicians of Canada (FRCPC).

Since 1992, Dr. Elliott has been a faculty member at UBC, where his current rank is Clinical Associate Professor. He was Co-Director of Undergraduate Medical Education for the UBC Division of Endocrinology from 1992 to 2012, and chaired the Endocrinology & Metabolism Society of BC, the professional body representing all BC endocrinologists and diabetes specialists, from 2008 to 2012.

Since 1992, Dr. Elliott has been on the active medical staff at Vancouver General Hospital, as well as conducting a busy private office practice in Endocrinology & Diabetology. Dr. Elliott is Director of Clinical Trials at BC Diabetes. He has authored more than 60 scientific papers and is actively engaged in 15 ongoing research projects.

Dr. Tom Elliot

Regional Community Showcase

Beans: How Can They Help People Living with Diabetes?

Alison Duncan is a professor and associate director of research at the Human Nutraceutical Research Unit in the Department of Human Health and Nutritional Sciences at the University of Guelph. Alison’s academic training is in nutrition, with an undergraduate degree in Applied Human Nutrition from the University of Guelph, training to become a registered dietitian at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre in Toronto, a MSc in Nutritional Sciences from the University of Toronto and a PhD in Nutritional Sciences from the University of Minnesota. Her teaching and research relate to the biological effects of functional foods on chronic disease-related endpoints evaluated in human intervention studies, with a particular focus on the agri-food-health continuum. Alison currently serves on the editorial board for the Journal of Nutrition and as Vice President-Research and president-elect for the Canadian Nutrition Society, and was recently named a Fellow of the Dietitians of Canada.

Alison M. Duncan

Most of us know that beans are good for you, but did you know there is actual science to back up that they can play a role in the prevention and management of diabetes? Professor Alison Duncan from the University of Guelph will discuss the health attributes of beans and explain why people living with diabetes should consider including them in their diet, not only for nutrition but also to help their diabetes. She will talk about the types of beans that are grown right here in Canada, and how you can easily incorporate them into your daily diet. She will also share some tips and tricks for easily incorporating beans into your meals and snacks.

My Blood Sugar Came Down: The importance of medication management in Type 2 diabetes care 

Teresa Pitre is a registered pharmacist and general manager of Pack4U Ontario. She combines excellence in clinical pharmacy practice with progressive management, leadership skills, and industry involvement. She has served on the board of the Canadian Society of Consultant Pharmacists for six years and is a past president. Teresa has worked and developed strong relationships within the Canadian long-term-care market, and has held two senior executive positions with enterprise long-term care service organizations. Teresa has a BSc in Biochemistry from the University of Ottawa, a BSc in Pharmaceutical Sciences from the University of British Columbia, a management certificate from Seneca College, and multiple certifications from the Ontario Pharmacists Association.

Teresa Pitre
BSc, BSc Pharm, RPh GM, Pack4U Ontario

Find out how digital health technology company Pack4U is changing how people living with Type 2 Diabetes manage medications and live their lives. We enable patients to achieve 97% adherence to medication regimens with spencer home medication hub reminders and personalized pharmacist care. By removing the guesswork around medication adherence with remote monitoring and two-way communication, we can help patients achieve optimal blood sugar levels. There’s more too, Pack4U connects people at home to a personalized medication delivery program, real-time reports, and adherence monitoring oversight. Our digital network of community and telehealth pharmacists, trained in adherence, data-based insights and care team coordination can help people living with Type 2 Diabetes take control of their lives with the help of their care team. Take the guesswork out of your Diabetes care, watch how spencer and team can help.

Canadian Diabetes Prevention Program (CDPP) Overview for Providers 

Harpreet Singh Bajaj is an Endocrinologist and Director of Late-phase research at LMC Healthcare. Dr Bajaj started his Endocrinology practice with LMC Brampton in 2009, after completing his clinical fellowship at the Cleveland Clinic (Ohio, USA). Dr Bajaj’s medical education was at Maulana Azad Medical College (New Delhi, India), following which he attained a Masters of Public Health (Epidemiology) at State University of New York in Albany (New York, USA).

Dr Bajaj is a Research Associate at Mount Sinai Hospital, Toronto and an adjunct lecturer at McMaster University. He is the principal investigator for the Canadian Diabetes Prevention Program (CDPP), a virtual 1-year health and wellness coaching program funded by the Public Health Agency of Canada.

He volunteers with numerous community public health organizations as well as media programs with the intent of raising public awareness on diabetes prevention and treatment, with a specific focus on the South Asian origin population in Canada. He is the founder of STOP Diabetes Foundation, a registered charitable organization working to reduce the burden of diabetes in Peel region of Ontario.

Dr Bajaj serves Diabetes Canada on the executive board of the professional section executive and as the Vice-Chair of Clinical Practice Guidelines (CPG).

Dr. Harpreet Singh Bajaj

Diversity Lounge


Session 1

Old recipes, renewed health

Mikahelia Wellington (she/her/hers), is a first-generation Canadian having parents who are both immigrant settlers from Jamaican. She is a registered dietitian working in community nutrition diabetes education in the Traditional Territory of the Mississaugas of Scugog First Nation and the territory that is covered by the Johnson-Butler Purchase of 1788 and the Williams Treaty of 1923.

With her educational background in Public Health Nutrition & Dietetics, she is passionate about the potential that food, nutrition, and social justice have to offer to people’s health and well-being. She is particularly passionate about the histories and sociology of Black people, our foods and how it impacts our health.

Mikahelia Wellington RD
MPH (She/Her/Hers)

Black ways of eating have always been delicious, adaptable, and meaningful. This food demonstration explores traditional Caribbean and African ingredients and ways of eating that not only bring back cherished memories but also promote overall health. Rediscover easy, quick, and flavourful meals and snacks that can support your journey in preventing and managing diabetes.

Session 2

Socacize Fitness

Socacize Founder, Ayanna Lee-Rivears is a dancer, fitness instructor, teacher and choreographer. As a native of Trinidad and Tobago, Ayanna was passionate in learning the dance styles practiced in that particular country. After completing the Fitness Instructor Certified Program at Canadian Fitness Profession (Can-Fit-Pro) Ayanna started Socacize Fitness Inc. to promote a fun way to exercise with a combination of dance moves, weight and strength training.

Through living and sharing her F.L.A.U.N.T. philosophy, she empowers Revelers everywhere to live inspired, motivated, and healthy lives.

Ayanna Lee-Rivears
Fitness Instructor, Dancer

Looking to get active? Learn a fun new way to get moving called Socacize!

Session 3

Myth Busting Diabetes: Choose Fact Over Fiction and Thrive with Type 2 Diabetes

Samantha Thoms is a registered dietitian who currently lives and works on the traditional, ancestral, and unceded territory of the Coast Salish peoples–Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish), Stó:lō and Səl̓ílwətaʔ/Selilwitulh (Tsleil-Waututh) and xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam) Nations. She offers virtual HAES-focused nutritional counseling services to BC residents who identify as women.

Her approach centres on helping women improve their wellbeing holistically through better relationships with food and body. Samantha completed her training in the US at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She has been practicing as a dietitian for 6 years, both in the US and Canada. When she is not working, she loves to hang with friends and family (virtually for now), spend time outdoors, and get lost in a good book. Connect with Samantha on Instagram @samanthathomsrd or visit her website: samanthathomsrd.com.

Samantha Thoms
MPH, RD (she/her)

In this presentation, we will explore how racism and white supremacy have influenced the way we are often led to think about health and wellness. You will learn some of the ways these beliefs have led to harmful recommendations when it comes to managing Type II DM. You will leave this presentation feeling more confident, informed, and empowered when it comes to managing your diabetes, without having to sacrifice your mental health or obsess about your weight.


Session 1

Getting Active

Gabriel has experience working with patients in orthopedics and sports, occupational rehabilitation and paediatrics. He has worked with babies less than a month old to elite athletes (a stint with the Edmonton Eskimos) and the elderly. His desire is to continue to learn and grow as a therapist bringing a style that embraces a multifaceted treatment approach.

Gabriel Wong
Registered Physiotherapist

Why you should consider moving more if you have diabetes? Discover "NEAT" ways to adapt activity into your day - it's not as hard as you might think!

Session 2

Cooking Healthy Meals at Home

Amy is a media and community dietitian, nutrition counsellor, author, professional speaker and also the founder of Libra Nutrition since 2008. For 8 years, she has been the spokesperson for the Dietitians of Canada National Nutrition Month campaigns. She co-authored Dietitians at Home, a cookbook for the whole family with Asian-inspired recipes.

Amy loves teaching and has a heart full of compassion and empathy for helping others. She is a supportive nutrition coach with a calm confidence to help her clients tackle complex medical issues and practical everyday meal planning. She is a regular Chinese TV and radio talk show guest expert on nutritional segments. She has conducted over 100 community workshops with over 10,000 people attending in total. Since July 2020, she has hosted 15 virtual nutrition workshops with over 1000 people joining in an online format.

For bilingual nutrition information, visit her website at https://libranutrition.com

Amy Yiu

Chef Jason He is a famous herbal cuisine and Chinese Cuisine Chef with extensive culinary experiences in China and Vancouver. A native of Guangdong Province, China, Chef Jason began his career in 1982. He has 40 years of experience working in a diverse settings of food services including hotels, restaurants, bakery, and hospitals. He co-authored two cookbooks in China and Hong Kong.

In 2006, he migrated to Canada. He has worked at famous, authentic Chinese seafood and dim sum restaurants in metro Vancouver. He has been sharing his culinary skills and knowledge to inspire a great number of chefs. He is a firm believer of using local seasonal ingredients in Chinese inspired healthy recipe.

Chef Jason He

Dr. Jennifer Gao is a registered doctor of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). She has practiced in China and Vancouver for over 22 years. She is an influential TCM educator for 14 years, teaching at Kwantlen Polytechnic University and Tzu Chi International College in Vancouver. Dr. Gao obtained her bachelor’s degree from China’s Guangzhou University of Traditional Chinese Medicine.

Her areas of focus include digestive, respiratory, gynaecological and skin issues, emotional conditions, and pain management. She takes a multi-dimensional approach to diagnosis, believing in the connection between emotional and physical health, and is passionate about the value of patient education.

Her broad professional knowledge in both clinical practice and in teaching has given her a deservedly solid reputation. Dr. Gao is committed to providing a high standard of TCM practice in the interest of British Columbians.

Jennifer Gao

Join Amy, Chef Jason and Jennifer in this presentation and cooking demo to learn:

  • Simple ideas on how you can add lean protein, fibre, and good fats to a meal
  • The benefits of including protein, fibre and low glycemic carbohydrates in regulating blood sugar
  • 5 basic steps to creating a healthy stir-fry
Session 3

The Importance of Foot Care in Diabetes

Queenie has been working with Vancouver Coastal Health as a Registered Nurse since 2012. Prior to that she worked in Fraser Health and private nursing care. Since 2017 she has worked in the Healthy Living Program as a Chronic Disease Prevention and Management Nurse. In this role she was primarily co-facilitated the Diabetes Programs with a Registered Dietitian. Currently she has a new job at North Shore Diabetes Education Centre as Diabetes Nurse Clinician. The North Shore DEC provides different level of diabetes care, including Type1, Type 2, GDM, Paediatric and Foot care services.

Queenie Lau

Patients with diabetes are at risk for poor foot health which can lead to foot ulcers. Therefore, prevention of foot complication is essential. This presentation will provide an overview on how to prevent and recognize the initial signs and symptoms of foot problems.


Session 1

Staying Fit with Diabetes

Kawal Deep Kaur is a Registered Physiotherapist in Canada and founder of Diligent Physio and Sports Clinic. She graduated with a Bachelor of Physiotherapy in 2004 and post graduated in Sports Physiotherapy in 2007 from Guru Nanak Dev University. She is also a member of the Diabetes Canada South Asian Diabetes Chapter.

In her 17-year professional career, she is an expert in Musculoskeletal conditions, Sports Physiotherapy, Vestibular Rehabilitation, Concussion Rehabilitation, Pelvic Health Rehabilitation, pregnancy and post pregnancy related ailments including low back pain, pelvic girdle pain, urinary incontinence, and diastasis rectus Abdominis and K Taping. She is also a member of Canadian Society for Pelvic Medicine.

Kawal carried out research on “Injuries Pattern Among Field Hockey Players”. She has presented three scientific research papers in conferences held in India. She has two national, and one international, publications to her credit. She has been an athlete and played field hockey for 12 years for State, National and All India Inter- University level. She has won fourteen gold, four silver and two bronze medals in various tournaments held at State, National and All India Inter-University level.

Kawal Deep Kaur

By the end of this session, you will understand why fitness is important in managing your diabetes. You will learn different types of exercises which will help to keep you fit and healthy.

Bollywood-Inspired Cardio Dance-fitness Demo

BollyX is a Bollywood-inspired cardio dance-fitness program that combines dynamic choreography with the hottest music from around the world. It is a 50-minute cardio class that has choreography which cycles between higher and lower-intensity dance sequences that can help you burn around 500-800 calories per session. Because it is a cardio dance class, you can expect to see high impact dance moves throughout the class. However, feel free to modify any of the dance moves as you like. Our goal is for you to have a lot of fun as you dance to the beats of amazing Bollywood songs and unleash your inner rockstar! Check out BollyX On Demand to dance with us! Bod.bollyx.com

Have fun as you dance to the beats of amazing Bollywood songs and unleash your inner Rockstar.

Session 2

Cooking with Healthy Whole Grains

Jyotika completed her Bachelor of Science at McGill University in Nutrition and Dietetics and went on to complete her Masters degree in Nutritional Science at the University of Toronto. She has worked in a variety of different settings including clinical and community nutrition as well as in a corporate setting, focusing on diabetes prevention and management, heart healthy eating and weight management.

She has both a personal and professional passion for diabetes education and has worked with the South Asian Chapter of Diabetes Canada for several years. She currently works at the Oakville and Milton Hospital as a Certified Diabetes Educator.

Jyotika Desai

Siva Swaminathan is the Executive Chair and one of the founding members of the Diabetes Canada South Asian Diabetes Chapter in Toronto.

After being in the IT field for 12 years, she decided to pursue her dream of being a chef by attending the George Brown Culinary program, where she worked with many Canadian top chefs. She apprenticed in Germany and Switzerland for two years and now operates Chezsiva Cooking School, which offers a variety of cooking classes and services. She was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes 15 years ago and has been using her culinary skills to develop low GI, healthy meal plans for people with diabetes.

Siva has been a volunteer with Diabetes Canada since 2006 where she organizes and presents information sessions on diabetes prevention and management for the South Asian and type 1 community. Siva has also been the driving force behind several diabetes expos for the South Asian community and played a key role in developing culturally relevant patient literature. Siva has won a number of awards for her work within the diabetes community and is now working on her next dream, which is authoring a cookbook.

Chef Siva Swaminathan

Looking for ways to include healthy whole grains in your meal planning? Join this session and enjoy an educational cooking demonstration. Don’t forget to download the recipe!

Session 3

Managing our Health while Fasting

Fatima Punjani is a registered Dietitian from Pakistan.

She attained her Masters of Nutrition in Pakistan and completed her Masters of Public Health in Australia. She has worked in Canada as a dietitian for the past 15 years.

Her interest in diabetes comes from seeing the large number of people within the South Asian community living with this disease. She feels that the association of our culture to food is so strong and that a Dietitian can make such a huge difference in helping the South Asian community understand food and its impact on their health.

Fatima Z. Punjani


This presentation will focus on the challenges faced by people living with diabetes while fasting. Included is information and healthy eating tips on how to maintain healthy blood glucose levels.


Session 1

Indigenous Perspectives in Diabetes Wellness

Crystal Bomberry is from the Mohawk Nation-Turtle Clan of the Haudenosaunee, and a proud community member of Six Nations of the Grand River First Nations Territory. She cherishes her many familial relationships in addition to her role with the Indigenous Diabetes Health Circle as a Diabetes Wellness Worker since 2009. During this time and beyond, she has found great value and contentment in her work around diabetes prevention and health promotion. With additional certifications in Personal Training, Healthy Eating, Yoga, Children’s Fitness, and Mindfulness, she has a deep passion for promoting the countless and profound benefits of engaging a holistically balanced lifestyle. The Indigenous Diabetes Health Circle approach combines Western diabetes knowledge with traditional wisdom and Indigenous influences.

Crystal Bomberry

Integrating western knowledge and traditional wisdom, IDHC programs and services aim to promote diabetes wellness through self-care of spirit, mind, emotion, and body for holistic balance. Diabetes is viewed through a cultural perspective and understanding. Reclaiming lost knowledge empowers an individual to enhance their sense of identity and foster self-love. This is a sacred responsibility that ripples out to our families, communities, and Mother Earth. Encouraging ownership of health and wellness helps in motivating participants to learn or relearn knowledge and skills that increase their capacity to reduce the incidence of diabetes and its complications.

Session 2

Make it Sacred - Remembering Ancestral Knowledge for Health & Wellness

Kathleen LaForme is of both Mohawk of Six Nations and Mississaugas of New Credit First Nations. She is the mother of 2 daughters, a son, and is a Grandmother. She is the Diabetes Wellness Coordinator for the Indigenous Diabetes Health Circle (formerly SOADI), South Region for 20 years. Kathleen has many family members and friends who are living with diabetes, and upon learning that diabetes was becoming an epidemic among Indigenous Peoples, knew that she had to do something to help stop this. She strives to do her best in promoting diabetes awareness and prevention among Indigenous Peoples not only through IDHC, but also among family, friends, and community.

After working with private clients, Laura became the caterer for the Indigenous Diabetes Health Circle (formerly SOADI). She has been cooking diabetes-friendly meals for meetings and training sessions and providing healthy lunches with budget friendly recipes for IDHC’s Healthy Lifestyle Fridays and Wellness Wednesdays. She also teaches cooking classes the second Thursday of each month at IDHC – now offered on Zoom. The “Let’s Cook with Laura” series is open to anyone who wants to learn how to make the most of their food dollar and gain confidence in the kitchen.

She has catered for many organizations in the Niagara Region such as the Niagara Regional Native Centre, Niagara Peninsula Area Aboriginal Management Board (NPAAMB) programming at Niagara College, catered the VIP Reception for Celebration of Nations and the opening night reception for “Opening the Doors to Dialogue” exhibit at the Niagara Falls Museum. She also facilitated a lunch and cooking skills program for Bethlehem Housing in Niagara Falls and Soaring Eagles School Secondary School.

Kathleen LaForme

Laura Lenson has lived in the Niagara Region for her entire life. She is very proud of her Indigenous heritage from Six Nations. She graduated from Brock University in 1987 with a BA, Music Major but her passion was always cooking. She made the decision to follow that passion and in 2006 enrolled in a personal chef course through United States/Canadian Personal Chef Association at the Culinary Business Academy in Albuquerque, New Mexico. When her training was completed, she opened her personal chef service, Laura’s Custom Cuisine

Laura Lenson

We are told to eat healthy all our lives, but what is eating healthy? We will share traditional ways of what that is and how to reconnect with our food and Mother Earth. Laura will provide a cooking demo using traditional foods - Fish & Wild Rice Bundles.

Session 3

Foot Care in Indigenous Communities

Lindsey Cosh is the Foot Care Program Coordinator for the Indigenous Diabetes Health Circle (IDHC). She has been with IDHC since 2008 after graduating from Brock University and has enjoyed the many years of providing diabetes services to the Indigenous community.

Lindsey was raised on the north shores of Georgian Bay in the small Indigenous village of Shebahonaning, colonially known as Killarney, Ontario. She belongs to the Wahnapitae First Nation. Lindsey currently lives and works out of Sudbury. With both Scottish and Aanishnaabe ancestry, Lindsey spent most of her earlier years learning and living off the land.

Lindsey’s work involves collaborating with Diabetes Canada, Diabetes Action Canada, Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences(ICES), the National Indigenous Diabetes Association (NIDA), the First Nation Technical Institute (FNTI), Health Quality Ontario (HQO), Union of Ontario Indians (UOI), Wounds Canada, many of Ontario’s AHACs and Family Health Teams and multiple healing and wellness leaders within the Indigenous community of turtle Island.

Lindsey Cosh

Lindsey Cosh is the Foot Care Program Coordinator for the Indigenous Diabetes Health Circle (IDHC). She has been with IDHC since 2008 after graduating from Brock University and has enjoyed the many years of providing diabetes services to the Indigenous community.

Exhibitor Tradeshow




Becton Dixon (BD) 

Egg Farmers of Canada
Lifestyle Hearing
Manitoba Association Healthcare Professionals


Naz’s Pharmacy


Ontario Bean Growers


Chartwell Retirement Residence
Ellerca Health

Sunstar Americas, Inc.

Canola Eat Well

Pack 4 U 

Abbott Nutrition

DEX 4 
Indigenous Diabetes Health Care Circle  
LMC – Research

Roche Diabetes

UBC- Research Network

Games & Prizes


EssentiA+BP Blood Pressure Monitor

Donated by: Dex4

Value: $60

Blood pressure monitor and universal size arm cuff


Therm-O-Clay Pack

Donated by: Dex4

Value: $35

Hot or cold natural clay compress 


Coffee Maker

Donated by: Keurig

Value: $160

Keurig K-Mini Single Serve coffee maker with a selection of 4 boxes


Withings Go Activity & Sleep Trackers

Donated by: Diabetes Canada

Value: $75

10 x Withings Go Activity Sleep trackers


Move More Your Life Depends on It Book

Donated by: Amanda Sterczyk, MA, CPT

Value: $25

Move More Your Life Depends on It by Amanda Sterczyk, MA, CPT


Sweat-Free Exercise for the Office

Donated by: Amanda Sterczyk, MA, CPT

Value: $25

Sweat-Free Exercise for the Office by Amanda Sterczyk, MA, CPT


Gift Card

Donated by: Metro

Value: $25

Metro gift card


Gift Card

Donated by: Rexall

Value: $50

3 x Rexall Gift Card



Donated by: Krista Lamb

Value: $25

Have questions?

Check out our faq page!


A special thanks to our Take Control: Let’s End Diabetes Together Type 2 Conference advisory committee for sharing their time and expertise to help create this educational event

Disclaimer: “As a participant in this virtual conference, you hereby acknowledge and agree to the following terms: Diabetes Canada (DC) in no way sponsors or endorses the information shared or presented amongst presenters. Any products and or services presented are in no way promoted or endorsed by DC or its affiliates. Diabetes care and dietary recommendations are strictly for discussion purposes and a physician should be consulted to determine appropriate care tailored to your needs. Any information presented during this event should not be recorded or published, including shared on any social media platforms or any forum outside the virtual conference whatsoever. Sharing this information is prohibited and remains the intellectual property of Diabetes Canada and its affiliates”. DC reserves the right to vary any of the speakers, topics or times without further notice.

The Take Control: Let’s End Diabetes virtual conference contains links to external websites that are not provided or maintained by or in any way affiliated with Diabetes Canada. Please note that Diabetes Canada does not guarantee the accuracy, relevance, timeliness, or completeness of any information on these external websites. You agree that should you decide to use any links to any third party websites referenced or linked from the Take Control: Let’s End Diabetes, you do so at your own risk. You further agree that your use of such third party website shall be subject to the terms and conditions and privacy policies of such third party websites

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes. This is an online virtual event. You do not have to travel to any specific location. You can participate from the comfort of your own home or anywhere that you have internet access. The event is accessible via your desktop, laptop computer, mobile and tablet device. Wherever possible, we recommend using a desktop or laptop computer for the best user experience.
This is a one-day event which will go LIVE on Saturday, May 1, 11 a.m. – 7 p.m. Eastern Standard Time (EST).
The event is designed for adults and youth living with type 2 diabetes. It is also a great source of information for those supporting someone with type 2 diabetes (i.e., spouse, child, caregiver, etc.).
Yes, please register via the “REGISTRATION” tab. At this time, you will be asked to provide your personal information, as well as a secure payment through PayPal. After registering, you should receive an email within 24 hours confirming you’ve been registered along with a link to the May 1 live event platform. At that time, you will need to enter your email (same as the one entered during registration) to gain access.
Using your login credentials (this is your email), you can log in as soon as the event goes live on April 24, 2021 at 11 a.m. EST. Once you log in you will be taken to the virtual lobby and will be able to view welcome and instructional videos on how to navigate our virtual conference. You will receive a virtual conference bag which will include a detailed program, as well as additional diabetes related information from our sponsors.

Much like an in-person conference you will be able to watch presentations in the virtual auditorium and participate in Question and Answer (Q&A) sessions. There is also an interactive tradeshow where you can visit a variety of diabetes related exhibits and ask questions of company representatives via chat box or schedule a call to speak with a representative.

We will also have an area called the International Learning Lounge where you can view a variety of fantastic educational videos. Some of these will include cooking and fitness demonstrations. Check out the INTERNATIONAL LEARNING LOUNGE tab for more details on topics and hosts.

To add a little more fun to your day, we are also including gamification (i.e. a virtual scavenger hunt, leaderboard) where you can earn points for a chance to win prizes. For more information, visit the Games & Prizes tab.
Using your login credentials (this is your email), you can log in as soon as the event goes live on May 1 at 11 a.m. EST. Once you log in, you will be taken to the virtual lobby and will be able to view welcome and instructional videos on how to navigate our virtual conference. You will receive a virtual conference bag, which will include a detailed program as well as additional diabetes-related information from our sponsors.

Much like an in-person conference, you will be able to watch presentations in the virtual auditorium and participate in Question & Answer (Q&A) sessions. There is also an interactive tradeshow where you can visit a variety of diabetes-related exhibits and ask questions of company representatives via chat box or schedule a call to speak with a representative.

We will also have an area called the International Learning Lounge where you can view a variety of fantastic educational videos. Some of these will include cooking and fitness demonstrations. Check out the International Learning Lounge tab for more details on topics and hosts.

To add a little more fun to your day, we are also including gamification (i.e., a virtual scavenger hunt, leaderboard) where you can earn points for a chance to win prizes. For more information, visit the Games & Prizes tab.
Virtual events bring the experience of an in-person conference to your personal computer, so just like an in-person conference, you have the freedom to pick the sessions you attend. But many say that attending the event in its entirety will help you get the most out of the experience. You will be able to log into the event until June 1, 2021 to watch presentations, visit the exhibitor tradeshow and watch or download any information. After 7:01 p.m. EST on May 1, 2021 you will not be able to chat with booth representatives
Yes, for early bird registrants the cost is before midnight March 31, 2021; as of April 1 the cost is .
No, you do not need to download or install any software to participate in our conference. Nor do you need a webcam to take part. You only need to have access to the internet.

For any technical assistance, please contact attech@vfairs.com OR visit our virtual Help Desk depicted in the internal lobby and a vFairs representative will be available to help you.


Diabetes Canada has contracted vFairs to manage registrations for this virtual conference. vFairs is committed to constantly ensuring the use of the latest state-of-the-art technology and procedures at its disposal to guarantee the security of the data hosted. vFairs will comply with the Canadian Standards Association (CSA) Model Code and will not use or disclose any person information or data otherwise than in strict accordance with the code.

Contact us via email at letsenddiabetest2@diabetes.ca or call 1-800-BANTING (226-8464) and our call centre staff will get back to you in 1-2 business days.