In order to take control of your health, learning how to manage diabetes is the first step. Everyone is different, so it’s important to develop a plan that works for you.
Diabetes is one of the most common medical problems in the US. 30 million adults in the United States live with diabetes and 84 million Americans are considered prediabetic. And type-2 diabetes accounts for 95 percent of all diagnosed diabetes cases in adults.
Since there are so many people living with diabetes, we’d thought we would try to help you manage it. Here’s a list of five key areas of diabetes self-management to focus on.
Make time to plan each meal for the week so you can keep track of your carbohydrate intake. By being prepared and creating a meal plan, it will help you monitor your blood sugar better and help you keep track of the food you eat. Write down your meals in your planner or a notebook to stay organized!
Not only is it important to eat healthy foods, but you should also balance what, how much, and when you eat. Try to avoid processed foods and pick healthier options. Pay attention to portion sizes and check food labels in the grocery store. This will keep you from eating too many carbs and it will lower your blood sugar.
Regular physical activity is key when it comes to managing your diabetes. By staying active, you can reduce your blood sugar levels and well as lose weight. Set a few weekly goals that are realistic to your lifestyle and keep track of your activity. You’ll find you have a lot more energy, and the exercise can help you cope with stress and lower your blood pressure.
Not everyone with diabetes takes medication, but if you do it's incredibly important to make sure you are taking it correctly. By checking with your health care team and being aware of your medications, you can keep your diabetes under control as well as lower your risk of heart disease.
Keeping track of when, where, and how often you check your blood sugar levels is key in managing diabetes. This often depends on a lot of factors, such as taking insulin or oral medication, exercise, and diet. Monitoring your blood sugar levels will help manage diabetes as well as assure that your care plan is working.
Learning how to manage diabetes can be a little tricky. That’s why it’s important to work with your doctor and perhaps a registered dietitian to develop a diabetes self-management plan that’s right for you.
In order to stay organized, create a plan with realistic goals for you. By exercising, eating healthy and monitoring your blood sugar, you can keep your levels from fluctuating. Being aware of these factors that influence blood sugar, you will be able to manage your diabetes care and plan accordingly and keep your personal diabetes under control.
November is National Diabetes Month. It's an opportunity for you to team up and work with partners in Northeast Ohio and across the United States to raise awareness of symptoms, promote healthy living and ensure people are aware of risk factors.
And to get the most recent report on the state of diabetes from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, you can download our infographic. It’s a quick and easy-to-read resource on the prevalence and incidence of diabetes, prediabetes, risk factors for complications, acute and long-term complications, deaths, and costs.