Diabetes can have far-reaching effects, touching every aspect of your life and influencing not just your diet, but also your mood, your overall health, and your appearance. There are ways to manage it, however, and here’s some useful advice for learning to live with diabetes instead of feeling like diabetes is defining your life.
The glycemic index of foods indicates how much the food item can affect glucose levels. Don’t forget: Lower GI numbers mean that the food is better for someone with diabetes.
Your insurance may cover a trip to the nutritionist once you’re diagnosed with diabetes, so take advantage of it! Bring a list of your favorite foods with you and ask if there is any way for you to make them healthy AND tasty, meaning you can have a treat without any of the guilt.
Don’t use alcohol swabs on your skin before you give yourself an injection of insulin. They will dry out your skin and cause you more trouble than they’re worth, which will make you even less happy about having to take your treatment. As long as you clean your skin with soap and water, you should be fine.
If you have been diagnosed with diabetes, I am sure you know how to check your blood sugar. You should check it before meals and at bedtime. This insures that if there is a sudden change in your blood sugar levels, you know in advance to address the situation in a timely fashion lest an emergency arise.
Think about what you drink. Diabetics need to be careful of everything they ingest, so don’t forget to monitor the nutrition data and ingredients on the items your drinking. Juice, for example, is very high in sugar, so you should drink it in moderation. Milk can be high in fat, so stick to skim.
If you’re having trouble finding organizations in your area that can help you get help with your Diabetes, dial 211. The United Way can point you in the right direction towards support groups and other organizations who will help you get discounted supplies and prescriptions so you can stay healthy.
To keep your diabetes from hurting your teeth, be sure to brush and floss several times a day. Diabetes increases the levels of glucose in your saliva, which means your teeth are much more susceptible to decay. Anyone suffering from diabetes needs to be extra vigilante when it comes to taking care of their teeth.
If you feel like speaking with others who have diabetes, you may want to join a local diabetes support group. Many hospitals and health clinics around the country have these groups so that people can speak with others with the condition and share advice about how to live a healthy life with diabetes.
You must consider fruit and high-glycemic index vegetables very carefully when planning a diet for Diabetes. Many fruits contain a LOT of sugar, which can affect your blood glucose adversely. Vegetables can cause the same problems, especially in juice form, including carrots, peas, and corn. Try to stick to low GI items like broccoli or apples which are rich in fiber.
If you have Gestational Diabetes then the concept of “eating for two” needs to be forgotten. You’ll need to reduce your food intake to small amounts every few hours to keep your blood glucose levels in check over the long term of a day. Don’t forget to have a snack before bed to control overnight blood sugar!
One of the most difficult things to remember for a newly-diagnosed diabetic is the importance of monitoring glucose levels diligently. Over time, failure to do so can lead to irreversible damage to the nerves and blood vessels throughout the entire body. These types of damage can lead to problems with emotional, cardiovascular, and sexual health.
Check your blood sugar often. This is very important if you are dealing with diabetes because you blood sugar can spike or get very low without you feeling any symptoms. You can buy a glucometer for less than $100.00 or you may be able to get it free from a diabetes educator.
Educate yourself. Being diagnosed with diabetes can be a scary prospect, so seek out information in order to be prepared and know what to expect. You can look into a class at your local community college, or check with the American Diabetes Association, as they have a team of educators who hold informational meetings you can attend.
Cut down on simple carbohydrates. These foods, such as pasta and bread, cause your blood sugar levels to spike which may cause hyperglycemia and a need for more insulin; that may result in a hypoglycemic episode. Stick to complex carbohydrates such as whole grains in order to keep your blood sugar stable.
Plan in advance for any high-sugar foods you will eat. Have insulin on hand for any sudden increases in blood sugar levels, and make sure that you monitor your blood sugar levels afterwards. The important thing to do is to be aware of how you’re feeling at any point after the meal.
If you are planning to travel via plane, take additional precautions to protect your insulin during the trip. If your insulin is in a piece of luggage that is checked, you risk that it is exposed to especially hot or cold, even freezing, temperatures. Always keep it with you when you fly.
If you have diabetes and still crave sweets, just remember to eat them in moderation. It’s a myth that diabetics can’t eat any sugar at all –but it is true that diabetes means you need to consume sugar with care. If you eat sweets, eat small amounts, and remember that the sweets count toward your carbohydrate tally for that meal.
With tips like the above, you can take control of your life and make sure diabetes isn’t the sole determining factor in what you do, how you feel and the choices you make. While you should definitely keep it in mind, that doesn’t mean it has to prey on your peace of mind. Even with diabetes, you can live a full, fun and happy life.