15 Essential Tips For Living With Diabetes
- Diabetes does not necessarily mean an end to leading a normal life
- Diabetics are advised to not stress too much
- Eating plenty of fruits, vegetables and exercising regularly is helpful
Diabetics need not be disheartened, as being diagnosed with diabetes does not necessarily mean an end to a normal, healthy life. Follow these 15 essential tips to live a normal life with diabetes.
Keep a lid on your stress levels
Stress whether physical or mental can trigger a raise in the blood sugar level. Stress hormones like cortisol play an important role in triggering this reaction as it provides sugar when the body needs it the most. People who are stressed for a prolonged period of time thus have a greater risk of sugar spikes. Diabetics who are often stressed out know when their sugar levels spike. It is important to keep a tab on stress levels and practice de-stress techniques like yoga, exercise, meditation and deep breathing.
Do not skip breakfast
Diabetics, especially those suffering from type 2 could wreck their sugar levels by skipping breakfast. Often people with diabetics assume that it is good to skip breakfast since you are not adding more calories. However research suggests that type 2 diabetics who skip breakfast have higher blood sugar level throughout the day. It is important to have a protein rich breakfast which gives a feeling of fullness and is also healthy.
Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables
The amount of carbohydrates you eat has the biggest effect on your blood glucose levels. Therefore, reducing portions can help manage your glucose levels. It is also important to choose better sources of carbohydrates including wholegrains, pulses, fruits and vegetables and some dairy foods.
Replace a pack of chips with some nuts
Go for the healthier option, always!
Limit aerated and sweetened drinks. Choose Green Tea instead
Aerated and sweetened drinks are loaded with empty calories and are an absolute NO for diabetics.
Reduce portion size
If you are overweight, reducing your overall portion sizes will also help you to lose weight. Losing excess weight has been shown to be beneficial in managing blood glucose, blood pressure and cholesterol levels.
Add fibre like whole grain and beans to your diet
Diabetics should eat more fibre rich food as it provides a feeling of fullness after every meal, thereby reducing the calories that you consume. In addition, fibre rich food also aids digestion.
Eat small but frequent meals
Eating small and frequent meals boosts your metabolism levels. Diabetics need to avoid over-eating for the simple reason that it may lead to a spike in sugar levels.
No excuses… Be sure to exercise daily
Physical activity and maintaining a healthy weight cannot be stressed enough. With regular exercise and an active lifestyle, your cells become more sensitive to insulin thereby increasing its efficiency. Exercising regularly can lower blood glucose and eventually this may mean fewer medicines to control the disease. In addition, regular physical activity helps in lowering blood pressure and cholesterol thereby reducing your risk for heart disease and stroke. Exercise helps you lose weight by burning calories and relives you of stress.
Opt for home cooked food instead of instant meals or takeaways
It is important to know what you are eating. When you opt for takeaway meals, you have no idea whether it is fresh and if it has been prepared under hygienic conditions. The choice of oil and fats used to prepare that meal is unknown. It is best to consume freshly prepared food at home.
Avoid processed and refined foods
Processed and refined foods are an additional burden to your cells and are detrimental for the health of diabetics.
Limit cakes and confectionaries
It is best to limit the intake of cakes and confectionaries. Opt for natural sweeteners like honey and jaggery and use recipes that allow you to make dessert with natural sources.
Be sure to get 6-7 hours of sleep daily
A good night’s sleep allows your body to rest and helps keep your blood sugar in control. Lack of sleep often leads to stressful situations which in turn raises your blood sugar levels.
Reduce the consumption of salt
Diabetics are at a risk of developing hypertension and heart disease. Therefore it is important that diabetics limit their salt intake.
Regularly evaluate your blood sugar levels
Monitoring your diabetes is crucial to preventing some of the possible complications associated with diabetes. This involves knowing your blood glucose, blood pressure and blood fat levels, as well as the condition of your feet. You should screening your eyes and kidneys regularly to detect early signs of damage.