When your body is healthy, it breaks down most of the food you consume into glucose (sugar) and sends it off into your bloodstream.
Unfortunately, diabetes can come along and disrupt that balance. Diabetes is a chronic condition that must be taken seriously because it causes the human body not to produce enough insulin or be unable to make use of it as well as it needs to, making it difficult for food to be transformed into energy.
Keeping up with your diabetes treatment plan around-the-clock can reduce your risk of life-threatening complications. Below you will find ten ways to actively take care of diabetes care and work towards a healthier life.
Your dietician, primary care provider, and diabetes care and education specialist can assist you with getting familiar with the basics of diabetes care and provide support. But you must follow through with the actual steps to keep the condition under control.
Get as educated as possible about diabetes and make the appropriate eating and physical activity adjustments to your everyday routines to get yourself to a healthy weight. Keep an eye on your blood sugar levels and follow the informed instructions of your health care provider for managing your blood sugar level. If there are medications that you have been directed to take, then be sure your doctor has cleared them.
Schedule between two to four diabetes checkups annually and yearly eye exams and physicals. When you get your physicals, your doctor will most likely ask you about your activity levels and nutrition consumption while looking out for diabetes-related complications such as signals that could indicate heart disease, nerve damage, and kidney damage. Issues with your feet, nerve damage, and heart disease.
Also, your eye care specialist will inspect you for signs of glaucoma, retinal damage, and cataracts.
Staying aware of the unhealthy habit of smoking increases the risk of type 2 diabetes and various diabetes complications coming about such as including:
- Heart disease
- Eye disease, which can lead to blindness
- Heart disease
- Kidney disease
- Nerve damage
- Premature death
- Reduced blood flow in the feet and the legs
- Stop smoking and other tobacco products.
- Worse blood sugar control
High blood pressure can, unfortunately, ruin your blood vessels, just like diabetes can. But what also makes high cholesterol a concern is that it can result in even worse damage when you are also dealing with diabetes, leading to awful conditions such as strokes and heart attacks.
Be sure to avoid excess alcohol, eat a healthy diet low in salt and fat-reduced, and exercise regularly to control. Eat a healthy, reduced-fat, and low salt diet, avoid excess alcohol, and exercise regularly to control high blood pressure and cholesterol.
Gum infections can arise if you have diabetes. Be sure to brush your teeth at least twice a day with fluoride toothpaste, floss your teeth once a day, and go for dental exams at a minimum of twice a year. If your gums are bleeding, swollen, or looking red, call your dentist.
Alcohol should only be consumed in moderation, one drinks a day for women and only two drinks a day for men. You want to control your drinking habits as it pertains to diabetes because it can lead to high or low blood sugar, depending on the amount of alcohol you drink and whether you are also eating at the same time.
Drink with a meal or a snack, and include the calories from any alcohol you drink in your daily calorie count. Alcohol can cause low blood sugar later, particularly for people who use insulin.
Being stressed out makes neglecting your diabetes care routine a likely occurrence. To manage your stress, be sure to prioritize your tasks. Learn and apply relaxation techniques, give yourself as much rest as possible, and aim to maintain a possible attitude.
For those with diabetes and additional cardiovascular risk factors like high blood pressure and being a smoker, doctors may recommend taking a low dose of aspirin each day to help decrease the risk of strokes and heart attacks. If you don’t have other cardiovascular risk factors, the potential risk of bleeding from aspirin use may make it a bad idea. Check with a doctor before making a decision.
Lastly, berberine is a supplement extracted from plants that studies have shown can reduce glucose levels in those dealing with diabetes. The diabetes-fighting berberine benefits also include helping the body respond better to insulin.