Metabolic Health

5 Essential Tips To Control Diabetes

Reviewed by

Shifa Fathima

5 Tips To  Control Diabetes

Diabetes is a condition in which your body is unable to convert the sugar present in the food we eat and use it for producing energy. Due to this, there is an excess buildup of sugar in the bloodstream. Uncontrolled diabetes can result in several serious consequences, such as damage to internal tissues and organs, including the eyes, nerves, kidneys, and heart. The cause of diabetes depends on the type of diabetes you have.

Type 1 Diabetes: Type 1 diabetes occurs when the body starts attacking the insulin-producing cells present in the pancreas and destroys them. Without insulin, the cells cannot properly utilize glucose for energy, and thus, glucose builds up in the bloodstream. Type 1 diabetes is an immune system disorder and may be triggered by a virus or due to genetic factors as well.

Type 2 diabetes: If you have type 2 diabetes, your body’s cells malfunction and don’t allow insulin to perform its job. As a result, the pancreas is unable to make enough insulin to overcome this resistance, and the glucose levels in the bloodstream rise.

Though there is no complete cure, Diabetes can be kept under control by adopting some healthy practices. Here are some of the most effective diabetes control tips to help you keep your blood sugar levels in check.

Healthy Diet

Consuming a healthy diet is the cornerstone of a healthy lifestyle, irrespective of if you have diabetes. However, people living with diabetes need to understand how certain foods affect the level of blood sugar in our bodies. Not only do they need to know the right diabetes control food to eat, but also the right quantity and the right combination. Here is a rundown of some of the best food for diabetes control and how diabetes can be controlled the best way using the right foods.

  • Counting carbohydrates and controlling portion sizes is the key to proper diabetes control. Carbohydrates impact blood sugar levels in the biggest way.
  • Use a scale or measuring cup to ensure you consume the right portion size to keep the blood sugar in control.
  • Make sure that all your meals are well-balanced. Each meal should contain a good mix of vegetables, fruits, starches, fats, and proteins.
  • Choose the right kind of carbohydrates. Certain food categories act as diabetes control foods, such as fruits, whole grains, and vegetables. They have low amounts of carbs and fiber, which help keep blood sugar levels in check.
  • Sugar-laden sweets and beverages cause blood sugar levels to rise rapidly. Due to this, they should be avoided entirely if you have diabetes.

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Exercise

Being physically active is another essential facet of controlling Type 2 diabetes. When we exercise, the muscles produce energy by using up the sugar present in the blood. Exercising regularly also helps the body to use insulin efficiently. As a result, the blood sugar level is lowered. The more you exert, the longer the effect will last. However, light physical activities such as walking, gardening, and housework can also help you control diabetes.

Discuss an exercise plan with your doctor. Ask them about the type of exercises that are right for you. Aim for a minimum of 30 minutes of aerobic activity daily. An intense workout can lower your blood sugar even up to a day later. So make sure to check your levels before and after exercise. If you take insulin and your blood sugar is below 90 mg/dL, make sure to eat a snack before you begin exercising to avoid lowering your blood sugar level excessively.

Reduce Stress

When we feel stressed, our body produces certain hormones that can cause blood sugar levels to rise. You may also find it harder to stick to your diabetes management plan if you are under a lot of stress. If you have been feeling stressed lately, try some relaxation techniques. Avoid the common stress triggers as much as possible. Learn strategies to cope with stress. Working with a clinical social worker or psychologist may also help.

Quit Smoking

Smoking can be extremely dangerous for people with diabetes as both are known to narrow the blood vessels. This narrowing of the blood vessels puts extra pressure on the heart and causes it to work harder. Quitting smoking will help lower your risk of stroke, heart attack, kidney diseases, nerve diseases, and diabetic eye diseases. It will help improve your blood pressure and cholesterol levels as well. Your blood circulation will be better, and it will be easier for you to exercise as well.

If you are in the habit of smoking, stop now! Take help from your doctor or counselor and give up this dangerous habit as soon as possible.

Stay Hydrated

Dehydrates and diabetes go hand in hand. Dry mouth and excessive thirst, in fact, are both signs of dehydration and indicators of diabetes. When we have diabetes, our body cannot produce and use insulin efficiently. Insulin helps the cells in our body to absorb sugar from the bloodstream and use it to produce energy. When the body is unable to use insulin properly, the excess sugar starts accumulating in the bloodstream. When the blood sugar remains high for a long period, the kidneys have to work extra hard to remove this excess glucose via urination. This can lead to dehydration, especially if you do not replenish the lost fluids.

Drinking water will not only keep dehydration at bay but also helps the body remove excess glucose easily. If you have diabetes, drink lots of fluids, at least 2 liters per day, to fight dehydration. Add fresh lemon or lime juice to plain water for extra flavor. You can also drink herbal teas, sugar-free coffee, or skim milk. However, avoid energy drinks, sodas, and fruit juices as they contain a lot of sugar.

Bottomline

Blood sugar levels can be successfully managed in many ways. Making lifestyle changes, consuming diabetes control food in moderation, keeping your weight in check, improving sleep quality, managing stress, staying active, and staying hydrated are some of the easiest yet best ways to improve your quality of life when living with diabetes. Consult your healthcare provider to make a tailored plan for managing diabetes and knowing the best food for diabetes control.

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