Maintaining A Healthy Lifestyle With Diabetes

Diabetes  Healthy Lifestyle Tips

Diabetes lifestyleWhen you have been diagnosed with diabetes one of the first things a doctor will tell you is that you need to review all of the aspects of your lifestyle to see if you can make healthier choices.  Many people know that they will have to change to a diabetes diet to ensure that the food that they consume will help them manage their condition.  But there are other factors that you can look at to help you maintain a healthy lifestyle and avoid diabetic complications.

Make sure you get enough sleep

One of the areas that people often overlook when they think about a healthy lifestyle is sleep.  There is some evidence that deprivation of sleep may actually be one of the factors for developing diabetes, but if you already have the condition, getting a good night’s sleep can help to regulate blood glucose levels.  Also if you have high blood sugar then the body tries to get rid of it by urination, and this means you may be up during the night several times visiting the bathroom.  Ensuring you are eating the right food during the day to avoid increasing your blood sugar levels, and then making sure you are getting enough restful sleep at night is critical to being healthy.  The other benefit of a good sleep is that usually you wake up and feel like exercising or doing physical activity.  This is very important as increased activity can also help to keep your blood glucose levels stable.

Good hygiene is important for diabetics

Another factor in maintaining a healthy lifestyle is focusing on good oral hygiene.  This is because when you have increased levels of glucose in your blood you will also have higher levels present in your saliva.  This can be one of the reasons people with diabetes often suffer much higher levels of periodontal disease.  Paying more attention to cleaning and flossing your teeth as well as using mouthwash is a good way you can keep periodontal disease at bay.

People with diabetes also have to watch for any changes in their feet, including excessively dry skin, calluses and foot ulcers and infections.  Diabetes can damage the nerves that control the amount of moisture to your feet, leading to serious complications.  All of these ailments can be prevented by regular examination of your feet, and quick preventative treatment for any minor cuts, abrasions or calluses.  Many doctors will recommend that patients with diabetes make regular visits to a podiatrist (an expert in foot conditions) for preventative advice and care of any issues.

Did you know that people with diabetes are much more likely to develop some form of hearing loss?  The National Institute of Health has found that people with diabetes are twice as likely to have hearing problems than those without the condition.  As high blood sugar levels can damage nerves, some researchers believe that the nerves in the ear could be damaged as well, thus effecting the person’s ability to hear.  Just as it is important to keep an eye on your feet, it is also important then to monitor your hearing, and talk to your doctor if you feel there have been any noticeable changes.

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Learning To Deal With A Diabetes Diagnosis

You’ve been to the doctor, and you have just been diagnosed with diabetes.  One part of you is relieved that you have finally found the reason behind some of the symptoms you experience.  But another part of you may be scared, upset or even angry.  These feelings are completely normal, and as your doctor will tell you, it won’t take long for you to settle into a routine that can help you live a healthier and even longer life.  Checking your blood glucose, taking medication, and coming to understand the symptoms of hypoglycemia are all ways to control diabetes.  But, like millions of other Americans, your thoughts will quickly turn to ways to improve your lifestyle and health so that you can reduce the need for drugs and even possibly send your condition into remission.

We have all been beaten around the head with studies and research about the benefits of regular physical activity.  When you have diabetes, you will no doubt be given a few lectures on getting fitter and becoming more active in general.  This is because when you use your body more, it lowers your blood glucose levels as well as improves your body’s ability to use insulin over time.  Doing more activity need not be daunting – you don’t necessarily have to join a fitness centre.  Just make a small effort each day to do some form of exercise such as walking up the stairs (instead of taking the elevator), or take a walk around your neighbourhood.  If you have kids, get them off the couch and take them to the park to kick a ball around.  The more enjoyable the activity, the more likely you will do it on a regular basis.  Exercise is a great mood enhancer, and being active has the added advantage that you will start to lose weight and may even start to feel more positive about yourself and your circumstances.

Diabetic Diet PyramidIn terms of your diet, your doctor will probably provide you with a guide on the foods to avoid and the foods to stock up on.  For many people with diabetes they have to follow a regime of eating small meals regularly, and it can be handy to have planned a diabetes diet for each week in advance so you are never caught without something healthy to eat.  Everyone’s dietary requirements are different depending on a number of factors such as age, weight and sex, and if you are having trouble planning meals that will help to control your diabetes then you could consider visiting a nutritionist to develop a diet that suits you.  There are also a number of resources from reputable national diabetes centres on the internet that can help.

It is a great feeling knowing that you can control something in your life, and coming to realise that something like diabetes doesn’t really have to slow you down.  If you make sensible choices and make the recommended changes in your lifestyle, you might find that you come out of the whole experience healthier and happier.  Don’t let diabetes control you!

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