If you are recently diagnosed with Pre-diabetes, it is time to be vigilant and get serious about your future health! Though, not everyone who has prediabetes ends up with diabetes, but this tricky health condition often doesn?t have any symptoms and if left unattended upon diagnosis, may progress to a daunting type 2-diabetes for a lifetime.
PRE-DIABETES is a condition in which the blood sugar levels are higher than normal but not yet in the range of diabetes. You should consider yourself fortunate to have been diagnosed with this problem at a stage where you get an opportunity to prevent the progression of this condition to its severe level.
Not letting pre-diabetes accelerate to diabetes could largely be in your hands! Taking few early steps in changing your lifestyle can significantly delay or even prevent type 2 diabetes.
1. Exercise regularly and stay active: Exercise offers a sequence of benefits; it uses more glucose during workouts, lowering your blood glucose levels. This in turn requires less insulin to transport the glucose, thereby, reducing the dependency on insulin. So, indulge in any type of exercise that may be enjoyed by you and be most appropriate for you.
Moreover, if you are overweight, then, it is very important that you shed some weight. Loosing just 5-7% of your weight can reduce your chances of progressing towards diabetes by 60-70%.
Staying active contributes to your exercise regime. Think of alternatives to include more physical activity into your daily life to stay active. Few simple measures at home or in office like using stairs instead of lifts or escalators, walking down to grocery stores, considering longer routes to walk down to your destination etc, can make you stay active, reduce your sitting and focus on reducing your sedentary lifestyle.
2. Go for a healthy diet: There are lots of good eating plans for delaying or preventing diabetes. The aim should be to have a meal plan that controls your blood glucose level and keeps it in the healthy, normal range. Emphasize on having less starchy and high fibre vegetables, fruits in moderate amounts, fish or lean chicken instead of red meat, low-fat dairy, egg whites, soy, and whole grains instead of processed grains. These may also help in reducing your blood sugar level if you are a pre-diabetic.
Besides eating healthy, tapering your calorie count and reducing your food portions is important. Make small changes rather than adopting a rigid eating plan that will be difficult to maintain for long term. A registered dietitian can help you create a meal plan that?s full of good for you and good for maintaining your blood glucose levels.
3. Sleep Well: Depriving yourself of sleep makes it harder for your body to use insulin effectively which in turn may increase your blood glucose levels. Maintaining a sleeping routine with a set bed time and wake up time at the same hour of the day helps in good sleep. One should aim for atleast six hours of sleep every night.
4. Regular Monitoring: Once you know that you are a pre-diabetic and your blood glucose levels are above normal, it is always advisable to keep tab of your glucose level through blood tests for regular monitoring. In turn, it helps you to judge if your extra effort of exercising, changing lifestyle or changing eating habits are helping you to what extent. Also, knowing your risk factors well also reminds you of undergoing regular monitoring.
5. Quit unhealthy habits: Smoking, drinking alcohol and taking too much of stress may not be in the interest of maintaining good glucose levels for pre-diabetics. They make your blood sugar accelerate.
6. Seek Support: Seeking support of your family, friends, co-workers and healthcare team, can help you win over your pre-diabetes battle. They help you in guiding you from time to time, make you responsible and accountable for your health and keep you motivated for your continuous fight against this struggle. The best reason to involve your family in your lifestyle change is because it?s easier to stick to a diet or exercise regime which everybody in the family follows for longer adherence. Also, since, Type 2 diabetes can have genetic links, changing your life as a family benefits everyone in the family and saves the younger generation from falling prey to diabetes.
7. Keep a watch on blood pressure and cholesterol: Uncontrolled blood pressure and high cholesterol levels may add to your agony. They speed up your way to cardiovascular diseases which is a possibility with high blood sugars as well.
For people who are at a very high risk of developing type 2 diabetes after being diagnosed with prediabetes, should seek the doctor advice for any medication. It works by keeping the liver from making more glucose when you don?t need it, thereby keeping your blood glucose level in a better range. But, this should be initiated only after the advice of your doctor.
?You have the power in your hands to reverse the chances of developing diabetes from pre-diabetes. So, don?t sink yourself in the sea of diabetes when you have an option of sailing through it smoothly!?
Kawaljit Kaur:?Kawaljit is a healthcare professional with an experience of over 15 years in healthcare operations. Her last corporate position was Vice President-Operations at Centre for Sight. As a writer, she has an expertise in writing medical contents and those related to present healthcare scenarios for various platforms that include medical professionals, healthcare companies, web health portals, hospitals and at present also heading the healthcare magazine.