Eating healthy and maintaining a balanced lifestyle can prevent or help manage diabetes. Eating right and staying active are two great ways to feel more energized, while keeping glucose levels within normal ranges.
Additionally, it’s essential to steer clear of foods and drinks with excessive sugar, salt or calories. Examples include desserts, sodas, sweetened coffee or tea, as well as other drinks.
Eat a Healthy Diet
Most cases of diabetes can be avoided and managed through lifestyle modifications such as eating healthier, losing weight, and engaging in regular physical activity.
A balanced diet should include plenty of fruits, vegetables, lean meats and low-fat dairy products. It will reduce your consumption of saturated (unhealthy) fats and added sugars, while increasing dietary fiber.
Steer clear of sugar-sweetened drinks, which are high in calories and may spike your blood sugar levels. Instead, opt for water or sparkling non-sweetened beverages like juices and smoothies that don’t contain added sugar.
Maintain a balanced diet by eating regularly and controlling portion sizes. In between meals, snack on low-calorie, protein-rich foods to help regulate blood sugar levels.
Eliminate refined carbs like white bread, sugary cereals and processed foods by replacing them with high-fibre whole grain options or alternative options like brown rice, oats and lentils. Doing this helps regulate your blood sugar levels and lowers the likelihood of developing type 2 diabetes.
People living with diabetes who engage in physical activity tend to have better blood glucose control and reduce their risk for other health complications. Furthermore, those who exercise regularly report more energy, sleep better at night, and reduce anxiety levels.
Exercising regularly is an integral part of the American Diabetes Association’s recommended diabetes treatment plan. Not only does it prevent weight gain, high blood pressure and heart disease but it also raises healthy HDL cholesterol levels; improves muscle strength and bone density; as well as helping your body produce chemicals which enhance moods.
Exercise at least 150 minutes a week, though more is ideal. Vary your exercises to challenge different muscle groups and if you’re new to exercising, start slowly and gradually increase the intensity.
Manage Your Weight
Eating right and living an active lifestyle are the keys to managing diabetes. Not only will these help you avoid complications, but they may also lower the likelihood of other health issues like heart disease.
Eating nutritiously can help regulate your blood sugar and weight, while physical activity improves the body’s capacity to use insulin more effectively. A dietitian can work with you to create an eating plan tailored specifically to your individual needs and preferences, according to Borcik.
Portion sizes are important when it comes to meal planning. For instance, make half your plate non-starchy vegetables and fill the rest with lean proteins or complex carbohydrates like fruit and whole grains.
Avoid high-sugar drinks such as sodas, sweetened juices and alcoholic drinks. Alcohol increases your risk for hypos (low blood glucose) and causes weight gain that makes diabetes worse.
Manage Your Blood Sugar
Diabetics must manage their blood glucose (glucose) levels through a healthy diet and regular physical activity. Together, these practices can help keep your sugar in an ideal range and decrease the likelihood of developing complications like eye disease, kidney damage or nerve damage.
Eating a variety of foods, such as fruits and vegetables, whole grains, legumes, low-fat dairy products, lean meats and fish can help lower blood sugar levels and delay diabetes’ onset. But it’s especially important to pay special attention to carbohydrates when making these changes.
Carbohydrates are the primary fuel for your body, and if you consume too many at once, your blood sugar level may spike. That is why it’s essential to plan meals and distribute carbohydrate servings evenly throughout the day.
Controlling your blood sugar can be achieved through the consumption of lean meats, skinless poultry, fish and eggs. However, limit saturated fats to a minimum and replace them with heart-healthy unsaturated fats.