Diabetes is a chronic, life-long condition that can have severe consequences if not managed correctly. Type 2 diabetes is the more common form of the disease, with around 90% of people diagnosed with diabetes having this form. Regardless of what type you have, it’s important to take care of yourself and your body. Diabetes can lead to eye damage, kidney problems, nerve damage, and heart attacks if left untreated. The following are some tips for managing diabetes and living a healthy lifestyle.
- See Your Doctor Regularly
One of the biggest problems that people face when they have diabetes is that they don’t see their doctor regularly. Even though it’s not an emergency, a little bit of blood can be taken at least every six months for testing. If you notice any symptoms of diabetes (e.g., frequent urination or dizziness), or if you have a family history of diabetes, see your doctor immediately for treatment. You should also see your doctor if you have health issues related to diabetes, such as heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, or kidney problems.
- Stay Active
Exercise is essential for everyone. However, it’s even more important for people with diabetes because it helps to keep your blood sugar levels in check. So try to engage in some form of exercise at least three times a week. The American Diabetes Association suggests that you perform 30 minutes of moderate-intensity activity like running, walking, swimming, or cycling three times a week. If you’re not sure what to do, consult with your doctor or health care provider.
- Eat Healthily
A healthy diet is the number one way to manage diabetes. However, eating healthy doesn’t mean you have to give up your favorite foods. It means that you eat a balanced diet with plenty of fruits and vegetables. You can also make smart choices like limiting the amount of sugar and carbohydrates you consume. Try to eat lean meats, fish and poultry, low-fat dairy products, vegetables, fruits, and whole grains. This will keep your blood sugar levels in check, and you’ll feel full longer.
- Maintain a Healthy Weight
Weight loss is important for anyone with diabetes, but it’s even more crucial for those with type 2 diabetes. It’s essential to maintain a healthy weight to help with your blood sugar levels and overall health. A healthy weight is considered to be a BMI (Body Mass Index) of less than 25. If you have diabetes, you should regularly check your weight and BMI to ensure you’re maintaining this healthy level. It’s also important to keep a healthy diet by eating the right foods and exercising regularly.
- Avoid Excessive Alcohol Consumption
Alcohol can raise blood sugar levels and cause an insulin spike. It’s important to avoid regularly drinking alcohol if you have diabetes as it can affect your blood sugar levels. This can lead to complications such as high blood pressure, increased heart rate, and even kidney damage. If you’re going to drink alcohol, be sure to do so in moderation and always be aware of your blood sugar levels after drinking. Many people with diabetes need to limit the amount of alcohol they drink, and it’s always a good idea to check with your doctor before drinking.
- Manage Stress and Learn Techniques to Relax
Many people don’t realize that stress can be a serious trigger for diabetes. According to the American Diabetes Association, 90% of adults with type 2 diabetes have high blood sugar levels due to stress. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, take a break and try something different, like yoga or going for a walk. Learning relaxation techniques is another great way to manage stress and stay healthy. For example, try breathing exercises, meditation, or deep muscle relaxation therapy.
The above tips are just a few ways to live a healthier life with diabetes. They’re meant to help you make the right changes, but they won’t be effective if you don’t continue making them. If you make the right changes and stick with them, your life will be better.