Doctors' Notes

Rev Run and Justine Raise Diabetes Awareness

Photo courtesy of Ask.Screen.Know.

Welcome to Doctors’ Notes, our newest contribution from Urban Health correspondents and husband and wife physicians Dr. Rob and Dr. Karla Robinson.  The dynamic duo will be fielding questions about health, as it relates to African Americans.  Please feel free to send them questions via digitalpitches@ebony.comWe promise to keep it anonymous. 


As a founding member of Run DMC, Rev Run’s lyrics revolutionized the hip-hop movement and let everyone know that it was here to stay.  He is now using his words of wisdom to revolutionize the way we think about our health.  Teaming up with his wife, Justine Simmons, Rev Run is encouraging everyone to know their risk factors for diabetes and get screened. 

After witnessing several family members suffer from the effects of diabetes, Rev Run and Justine Simmons are not only talking the talk, but walking the walk and they want to see YOU at Run’s House!

JET: Rev Run you are a legend and trailblazer in hip-hop, but there is a new generation that has also grown up watching you on TV. Tell us a little bit about your new reality series and some of the projects that you are working on now.

Rev Run: Run’s House was a big show for us, but now we have a new show that will be premiering on HGTV on March 27th called Rev Run’s Renovation where we’re transforming the home that people watched my kids grow up in Run’s House.  I’m excited about it.  It became a really big hit on DIY network so this opportunity to be able to renovate my home in front of people was really rewarding.

JET: You have also teamed up with Novo Nordisk to increase awareness about diabetes.  What exactly is the Ask.Screen.Know Campaign?

Rev Run:  Ask.Screen.Know is a website where you can go to find out your risk for diabetes.  We are working with Novo Nordisk to let people know that if you’re African American, you have double the risk. If you’re 45 and older, you’re even more at risk.  If you’re not working out, not taking care of yourself, and eating the wrong foods, overweight, or have a family history you can run into problems. We’re encouraging people to visit the website and see if they’re at risk, which is a great beginning. My job at this point in my life–as I’m always giving people these words of wisdom–is to talk to people about health.  Health is your first wealth. 

JET: Can you share a little bit about why you are so passionate about educating the community about diabetes?  Did you have personal experience with your family or loved ones?

Justine: My dad has diabetes and has been in and out of the hospital. My aunt is in the hospital with diabetes and there are other relatives on my father’s side with diabetes.  My mom’s father also passed away years ago from diabetes.  When I heard of all of the different risk factors, I thought that maybe I had it. But what’s amazing about diabetes is that if you catch it in time, you don’t have to have it. Or, if you find out you have it, you can get it under control.  So I just pray that everyone goes to

JET: And we understand you’re offering a special incentive to people who take the risk assessment on the website?

Justine: We have an amazing sweepstakes going on right now where if you go online and take this quick risk factor assessment, you’ll be eligible to come to our house and there will be a diabetes educator there to tell you about living a healthy lifestyle and answer any questions. 

Rev Run: It’s a full package! You get to fly in and you get to hang out at my house.  We’re luring you in by giving you a tour of Run’s House and you’ll have a good time!

For more information, and for the chance to meet Rev Run and Justine, visit askscreenknow.comFor the full-length interview and to see how Rev Run and Justine are decreasing their risk of developing diabetes, log on to The Urban Housecall Radio Show and click the Rev Run tab.

Stay tuned for more on diabetes from Dr. Karla and Dr. Rob, as we honor Diabetes Alert Day on March 25th

It’s a health thing…we’ve got to understand!

About the Doctors:

Dr. Karla and Dr. Rob are the founders of Urban Housecall Magazine and host the Urban Housecall Radio Show.  For more from the doctors, visit their website at, like them on Facebook UrbanHousecallMagazine, and follow them on Twitter @urbanhousecall!

(Rev Run and Justine image courtesy of Ask.Screen.Know)