It isn’t the easiest thing to manage diabetes—but it can be simpler. Here are tips for diabetics that make managing it a little less complex.
Diabetes is a serious disease that affects people of all ages. With proper management, coping with diabetes can be made much simpler for an easier, happier life.
If you or someone you love has diabetes, what are some things you can do to keep it under control?
Read on to learn some helpful tips for diabetics that will make managing this disease more streamlined and easy.
Eat Grains and Fiber to Fill Up
If you have diabetes, aim to eat foods that contain whole wheat or grains such as barley and oats. Instead of white bread, switch it with bread made of whole wheat flour. You can also substitute white rice for brown rice.
When you eat foods rich in fiber, you’ll feel fuller faster and for longer periods of time. The feeling of fullness will help to keep your blood sugar stabilized and will also help you avoid overeating.
Try to eat eight grams of fiber or more per meal, and raise that number as much as possible when eating foods heavy in carbohydrates. The fiber will help manage your blood sugar and keep your heart healthy. People who have diabetes are at a higher risk of heart disease.
Foods that are naturally high in fiber include things like beans, peas, sweet potatoes, and carrots. Fruits such as pears, berries, and apples are also rich in fiber and make a wonderful substitute for sugar-laden snacks.
Foods that are rich in healthy fats like avocado will help you to feel full while keeping blood sugar at a reasonable level. Get enough protein in your diet by eating eggs, chicken, and red meat to help you feel full and stay strong.
Tracking Tips for Diabetics
As a diabetic, there are several numbers you should track regularly to make sure everything is at a healthy level. All diabetics should check blood sugar twice a day or more. Keep notes and record the date so you can show your doctor.
It’s also a good idea to make a special note on days where your blood sugar is out of range. Mention things like your diet for that day and your activity level to help you understand the cause of blood sugar spikes.
Diabetics should also get an A1c blood test. This special test determines your average blood sugar for the last two to three months. Patients can obtain this test from their doctor to help get a better understanding of their average readings.
You should also try to track your carbohydrate intake. Carbohydrates can cause blood sugar levels to spike. Use a fitness or food tracking app to help you record the numbers so you can see what foods to avoid in the future.
Other important numbers to track include your cholesterol, blood pressure, and triglyceride levels. Since diabetes makes the odds of heart disease increase, it’s important to monitor all three of these things with your doctor.
If you’re unsure how to keep your numbers under control, talk to your doctor about medication recommendations. They can also help you discover a few lifestyle changes that can improve heart health. Diabetes may also cause glaucoma, so have your eyes tested regularly.
Stay Active and Get Good Sleep
Proper sleep and exercise are vital for everyone, but it’s especially important for diabetics. One of the most crucial tips for diabetics is to get regular exercise.
When you participate in regular exercise, it can help you maintain a healthy weight which will also keep your blood sugar in check. Daily walks or mild aerobic activity for just 30 minutes a day can do wonders.
You can also try things like water aerobics, tennis, or use gym equipment like a treadmill or stationary bike. Ask a friend to join you in your exercise endeavors. When you have a partner or someone there to hold you accountable, it makes the process much easier (and more fun, too).
If you have joint problems or other health issues, you can make the exercise two different sessions of 15 minutes each. Take your time and work your way up toward more vigorous or regular exercise as you get stronger. Don’t forget to stretch, warm-up, and cool down after every exercise session.
Sleep is another crucial element of being healthy, especially if you’re diabetic. People who don’t get enough sleep tend to eat more the next day which can lead to unhealthy weight gain.
Studies have also shown that improper or not enough sleep can lead to a myriad of other health problems including heart disease and even cancer. Make sure you get the sleep you need to feel good and stay healthy.
If you’re stressed, try meditation and deep breathing to help you feel more relaxed. Stress not only raises your blood pressure, but it can also contribute to sleepless nights. Exercise can help you get to sleep faster and help you stay asleep longer.
Staying Healthy with Diabetes
Try these simple lifestyle tips for diabetics to help you feel your best and keep your blood sugar under control. With a healthy diet rich in fiber and low in carbohydrates, you can maintain a healthier weight and better blood sugar levels.
Talk to your doctor if you need an A1c test and ask them about other changes you can make to stay healthy.
If you need medical care in the Brooklyn area, be sure to visit our offices or contact us today to schedule an appointment.