Living with diabetes can be tough but also manageable. It is essential to identify one’s sweet spot and thereby hatch a routine that can be followed not only for a month or two but also lifelong. It is necessary to take diabetes seriously and stick to a healthy lifestyle and taking good, regular medication helps.
Taking care of yourself will not only make your present but your future also healthy as it will help you in the following aspects:
For all these, maintaining a regular routine from morning to night is valuable.
A : A1C Test
Hb A1C test calculates the average range of blood sugar levels for the last three months. It is required to keep the level below 7, anything higher means unchecked fluctuations in blood glucose levels.
B: Blood Pressure
High blood sugar often results in higher blood pressure due to deterioration of the arteries by plaque formation and loss of elasticity. The average pressure should be 140/90 and higher than this means a greater risk of stroke and heart attacks.
This is crucial as a blood lipid profile can control both blood sugar and pressure levels. An increase in LDL (bad) cholesterol and triglycerides and a decrease in HDL (good) cholesterol can increase life risk tenfold and more so for the elderly.
1. Choose a healthy cooking oil rich in omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants like olive oil, sesame oil, canola oil, sunflower oil, etc., and use the unrefined and cold-pressed versions.
2. Control portion size by using a smaller plate and filling one-third of the plate with vegetables and fruits. Including oats smoothies for breakfast, fruits with low glycemic index as snacks, lean meat or fish and green vegetables for lunch and soups and salads for dinner can keep you full yet maintain your calorie count.
3.Opt for freshly cooked meats over precooked and cold cut ones.
4. Avoid foods high in sugar like cola, pastries, desserts, ice creams, sauces and ketchup, and sweet yoghurts.
5. Avoid fried and high-fat foods like burgers, fries, chips, and snacks.
6. Avoid foods containing trans fats like bacon, margarine, processed foods, and vanaspati.
7. Avoid sweet condiments like jaggery, honey, condensed milk, and cream.
8. Eat more fibre-rich foods like oats, whole grain pieces of bread and cereals, brown rice, lean meats, low-fat milk, and cheese.
9. Drink a lot of water
10. Consult with a nutritionist who will chart out a diet plan appropriate for your present and past medical conditions.
1. Check the blood sugar level first thing before eating anything.
2.Take the medicines at the same time regularly. Some people may be prescribed a basal insulin dose to work daylong and also in between mealtimes. It is best to choose the timing at a time when it can’t be forgotten easily like early morning.
3. Eat a hearty and healthy breakfast. Consistency of meals is actually helpful in preventing blood sugar spikes as you don’t tend to overeat later. Also, medications prescribed considering regular meal times will lead to fluctuations and hypoglycemia due to skipped meals. Fine-tuning of meals, what we eat, and medicines in our daily routine is needed to keep blood sugar levels stable.
4. Check your feet. Nerve damage due to diabetes can affect one’s sensation in the foot. Unnoticed infections, blisters, and swelling can proliferate which may even lead to foot amputation. So, look out for sores and cuts in your feet daily and also check the shoes before putting them on. Use special custom-made shoes if needed.
1. Take a timely lunch break. Stress is one of the driving factors in increasing diabetes, as cortisol hormones released during stress times lead to unlikely spikes in blood glucose and increase insulin resistivity. You can get involved in yoga and meditation to get rid of stress. Plan a lunch break early, eat a regular meal, and a short stroll around. Exercising can help you stay stress-free and also helps in burning calories faster. If nothing else, a walk of 30 minutes each day can do wonders.
2. Keep some healthy snacks nearby. Snacking in the afternoon helps to keep hunger pangs at bay so that you don’t overeat and keeps the sugar levels stable.
3. Exercise at least 30 minutes daily. Take the stairs or a brisk walk or take the files yourself and socialise with your co-workers and avoid completely sedentary lifestyles.
1. Eat a balanced dinner which will compensate for your nutritional needs keeping in mind your breakfast and lunch. Take the medicine before or after meal times as prescribed.
2. Relax while watching TV, reading a book or listening to music but stay active. Either do the weights or treadmill or a light exercise, moving more helps insulin activity more efficiently.
1. Brush your teeth. Floss regularly morning and at night. Diabetes tends to cause periodontal and dental diseases, so take care of your teeth and gums.
2. Diabetes also causes various skin diseases, leading to dehydrated skin that may peel, break or get sore. Take care of your face and body, and apply a good lotion every night before sleeping.
3. Check your feet again after the day’s wear and tear and massage your hand and foot with a cream.
4. In the end, do a final blood sugar and pressure test and record it along with all other test results. This will help in motivating as well as providing an insight into your daily ABCs.
1. Quit smoking and drink occasionally.
2. Get a routine checkup done at least twice annually if you notice any unwanted changes.
3. For the elderly aged above 40, continuous glucose monitoring is useful in alerting them during any emergency.
4. Do a complete checkup of blood, eye, dental, feet, kidneys, and urine tests at least once yearly.
Cope with diabetes by enrolling in a support group and a good health care program. Invest time in your hobby, do some yoga and meditation, gardening, walking, running or cycling, and stretching help in increasing muscle strength as well as keeping diabetes flare-ups in control.
You should have small meals after every 2 hours instead of heavy meals with long intervals. This will result in better burning of calories.
Drinking plain, unsweetened water is the best for people with diabetes in the morning. You can also have apple cider vinegar or warm water with lemon juice if you want to detoxify your body and lose those extra kilos.
Reducing your sugar and carbohydrate intake and taking prescribed medication for diabetes after consulting an experienced doctor can help you control diabetes with immediate effect.
A blood sugar level of 70- 99 mg/dl after 12 hours of fasting is considered to be normal for a person with diabetes
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