Managing Your Diabetes So It Doesn’t Manage You!
Type 2 Diabetes is the most common form of diabetes. This form of diabetes usually begins with insulin resistance, a condition in which fat, muscle, and liver cells do not use insulin properly. At first, the pancreas keeps up with the added demand by producing more insulin. In time, however, it loses the ability to secrete enough insulin in response to digestion of food. Being overweight and inactive increases the chances of developing type 2 diabetes. Treatment and management of this disease may include using specific medications, making wise food choices, exercising regularly, taking an aspirin daily, and controlling blood pressure and cholesterol (all of these lifestyle factors should be discussed with your Primary Care Provider). Following this advice can reverse your type 2 diabetes.
• Follow a diabetes food plan
• Eat the right portions of healthy foods
• Eat foods that have less salt and fat and watch your carbs A diabetes counselor or dietitian should be consulted to provide more detailed information on designing a personalized food plan, however, the following information is provided for broad application. You don’t need to eat special foods; the foods on your meal plan are good for everyone in your family. Try to eat foods that are low in fat (no more than 35 percent of total energy intake), salt, and sugar and high in fiber such as beans, fruits, vegetables, and grains. Consume at least 5-9 servings of fruits and vegetables. Do not skip meals because your blood glucose may get too low. It may be better to eat several small meals during the day instead of one or two big meals.
• Be physically active on a regular basis
• Stay at a healthy weight. Regular daily physical activity (doesn’t have to be “traditional” exercise e.g., going to the gym) aids in weight control, improves insulin sensitivity and lipid levels and helps maintain muscle mass. Moderate exercise such as walking for 30 minutes most days of the week, has been associated with a reduction in risk of Type 2 diabetes. If you haven’t exercised lately, begin slowly. Start with 5 to 10 minutes, and then add more time. Modest weight loss (5-10 percent of body weight) has been shown to improve both insulin sensitivity and diabetes control.
• Stop smoking It is the single most important thing you can do to improve your health….Right now!!!
• Take your medications Take the medications your primary care manager (PCM) has prescribed regularly and as directed. Check your feet daily Check your feet daily for cuts, blisters, red spots, swelling, numbness or pain. Call your PCM if any sores won’t heal.
• Brush your teeth Brush your teeth and floss every day to avoid problems with your mouth, teeth, or gums. See your dentist twice a year and tell your dentist you have diabetes.
• Have your eyes checked Have your eyes checked as directed by your PCM. Uncontrolled Diabetes may have negative effects on your vision.