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Tips for Managing a Life with Diabetes
Diabetes is a chronic health condition that involves changing lifestyles, ensuring proper nutrition, physical exercise, and medications. People with diabetes must take several precautions to have a good quality of life and avoid possible complications. Living with diabetes can be difficult, but it can be manageable with the proper knowledge and resources. So if you are struggling to live with diabetes, this guide will provide you with some helpful tips to make the necessary changes in your life.
Read more about how to prevent diabetes
Here are some tips to help you manage this condition and live a healthy life with diabetes:
1. Keep a Check on Blood Sugars
People with diabetes should keep a regular check on their blood glucose levels using a glucometer, in order to obtain glucose information representative of daily glucose excursions. Doing so will help detect possible acute complications, hypoglycemia (low glucose), or hyperglycemia (high glucose).
Glucose Self-monitoring plan based on when and how often to check is personalized by the doctor based on several factors including when medication therapy is initiated or changed, any indication that diabetes control is not stable (e.g., recent history of hypoglycemia), or if you are on multiple glucose-lowering medications etc.
For individuals on Insulin, the frequency of checking should be 6-7 times over the whole day. Also know about diabetologist.
For individuals not on Insulin, it is recommended to check your blood sugars a minimum of at least 4 Times a day.
2. Adopt a Wholesome Healthy Diet
Diet is a fundamental part of diabetes control and helps to delay or prevent the onset of several complications. Distribute your meals throughout the day, by dividing the portion size of 3 meals into 5 meals E.g. Breakfast, Mid-Morning Snack, Lunch, Evening Snack, and Dinner. Avoid High Carbohydrate Meals as they are rapidly absorbed and can instantly raise glucose levels.
3. Be Physically Active
Regular physical exercise is one of the fundamental pillars of diabetes treatment and prevents associated complications. Apart from being beneficial for Diabetes, exercise also helps reduce high blood pressure, lowers cholesterol, and improves your cardiovascular function. The type, intensity and frequency of exercise depends on your age and fitness level. Your workout routine should start slow and gradually progressively increase it over time.
4. Take Care of your Emotional and Mental Health
Try and focus on your emotions and mental health as much as possible. Doing this will help you understand what changes you need to make to live a healthy life. Diabetes education and emotional support are required for people with diabetes and their family members. You can find support groups and diabetes associations that can help you.
5. Give Time to Your Relationships
Your relationships will also play an important role in your life with diabetes. If you have a partner, make sure they are supportive and understand your condition. If you have children, teach them about your condition and how they can help you manage it. It is also important to build a support network of family and friends who can help you through tough times.
6. Maintain Adequate Hydration
People having diabetes are at increased risk of dehydration because a high level of glucose in the blood causes the kidneys to try to eliminate it in the form of urine. For this reason, people living with diabetes are often thirstier when hyperglycemia occurs. For someone with diabetes, drinking enough water should be a rule. Drinks such as natural juices or juices without added sugars, "light" or "zero" soft drinks that contain sweeteners instead of sugar also help improve hydration.
7. Watch Out for Hypoglycemia
The drop in blood glucose is called hypoglycemia. People with diabetes should be aware of the symptoms of hypoglycemia to be able to treat it quickly and prevent it from getting worse.
8. Be Cognizant about Preventing Diabetes Complications
Living with diabetes also means being aware of the complications that this disease can cause if it is not well controlled, both in the short and long term. The most common complications of diabetes are cardiovascular diseases, nephropathy, and retinopathy.
9. Get Regular Eye Check-ups
People with diabetes must carry out regular check-ups, especially on the condition of the retina, to prevent, detect and treat any complications successfully. Living well with diabetes requires following the treatment prescribed by the endocrinologist and being aware of the importance of lifestyle changes and regular check-ups to avoid complications.
10. Take Care of Your Feet
People with diabetes may have changes in sensitivity and circulation. Conducting a daily examination of your feet and looking for signs of injuries is essential. Visit your podiatrist as people with diabetes are at a greater risk of developing foot problems. Living with diabetes involves making certain changes in your lifestyle to control the disease and prevent its complications. You can live a long and healthy life with the correct information and support.
11. Adhere to Your Medication Schedule
Medication, together with diet and exercise, are fundamental pillars in the treatment of diabetes. Hence, it is necessary to agree to and follow the prescribed recommendations of health professionals. You should not change or stop the medication or doses prescribed by your doctor without prior consultation.
Also read about are dates good for diabetes
Table of Contents
If you are living with diabetes, it is essential to know the treatments and tips to control this health condition and prevent complications. Following a healthy lifestyle, exercising regularly, eating a balanced diet, and taking medications for diabetes as prescribed by your doctor can help you manage diabetes and live a long and healthy life.
1. How do you manage your life with diabetes?
Follow these four steps to help manage your diabetes.
Learn how to reach your diabetes ABC goals.
Ask your health care team for help.
Step 1: Learn about Diabetes.
- Ask your provider about the multiple aspects of your diabetes.
- Learn where you can go for support.
- Learn how caring for your diabetes helps you feel good today and in the future.
Step 2: Know your Diabetes ABCs
- Ask your provider about your ABC goals - A1C, blood pressure, and cholesterol numbers
- Ask your provider about what you can do to reach your ABC goals
- Record your numbers to track your progress.
Step 3: Learn how to Live with Diabetes.
- Ask your provider for a healthy meal plan.
- Ask about ways to be more active.
- Ask how and when to test your blood sugar and how to use the results to manage your diabetes.
- Ask your provider to help with your self-care.
- Discuss how your diabetes plan is working for you each time you consult your provider
Step 4: Get routine care to stay healthy.
- Ask your health care team about the tests you may need.
- Ask what your results in these tests mean including ones for monitoring
- Make a note of when your next consultation is and prepare for any queries that may come.
3. How a diabetic person can live a normal life?
Having diabetes may impact how you go about your everyday life, but it doesn’t impact who you are or what you hope to become. One important thing to remember is that things that work for others, may not work for you, making it necessary for you to experiment and learn what works for your body and your lifestyle. So the bottomline is that you can manage your diabetes by continuously learning about and monitoring it.
This website's content is provided only for educational reasons and is not meant to be a replacement for professional medical advice. Due to individual differences, the reader should contact their physician to decide whether the material is applicable to their case.