Afflicting 1 in 11 people in the world, diabetes has gained reputation of a silent killer. This chronic illness slowly damages the kidneys, heart, eyes, and skin over time.
Diabetes occurs when a person’s body is unable to process insulin. Since it is the key to breaking down of food for energy, diabetes can cause hyperglycemia (where body sugar levels are extremely high) or hypoglycemia (where they are extremely low). Both these conditions are extremely dangerous.
The two most common types of Diabetes are Type 1 and Type 2. The former commonly affects adolescents and children, and the latter, older people.
Type 2 is more common and difficult to diagnose. As there is no current cure for diabetes, it is best to adopt measures to prevent it.
Here are some efficient ways to keep diabetes at bay.
- Watch Your Weight
Diabetes is essentially a metabolic disorder. If you gain excessive weight, your metabolism slows down and starts malfunctioning, thereby increasing the chances of diabetes.
People who are overweight are up to 80 times more likely to contract diabetes than those who are not.
Nearly 38% of adults in America are obese presently which is expected to go over 50% in next 10 years.
When excess fat is stored around the abdomen, it causes the body to release chemicals that prevent insulin from efficiently utilizing glucose from carbs. This prompts the development of Type 2 diabetes.
Keeping a check on weight is therefore important. You must cut down on refined sugars and processed food, and switch to healthy foods to avoid diabetes.
- Exercise Daily
Including exercises and workouts in your regimen not just helps avoiding Diabetes but other illnesses too.
Regular exercising and walking will keep your weight under control, boost metabolism, and strengthen your heart and muscles.
You can even take up aerobic exercises like swimming, walking and running. These help to improve blood circulation and ensure that your body utilizes insulin better.
If you love hitting gym, weight training can help increasing muscle mass, in turn reducing blood glucose levels.
- Eat Wisely
Considering diabetes is a metabolic disorder, it isn’t surprising that the easiest way to stay away from diabetes is by eating right.
Studies have found that eating whole grain instead of refined flour makes you 30% less likely to develop diabetes.
By incorporating foods rich in fiber like apples, yogurt, beans, and legumes, you can promote your body’s insulin production.
Try to switch to unsweetened tea and coffee instead of sugar-intensive juices and soft drinks. Add a teaspoon of cinnamon for that anti-diabetes punch.
- Restrain from Red Meat
It is equally important to rein in your consumption of red and processed meat like bacon and salami.
A daily serving of meat increases the likelihood of getting diabetes by 20%. Both of these foods are high in sodium and iron, which restrict insulin production.
The high saturated fat content puts you at risk of associated illnesses like heart disease and obesity.
Eat red meat once in a blue moon if you can’t resist. Add more of poultry and fish to prevent diabetes. For example – Salmon is a great source of Omega 3 which is beneficial in avoiding stroke and cardiovascular issues.
- Avoid Stress
It’s difficult to stay away from stress in the modern day. There is literally no work-life balance. In order to be more efficient and surge productivity, we tend to multitask and swamp ourselves with work. This is the reason we stay stressed at most times.
Of course there are other factors too but when it becomes a part of our lifestyle, it is the most dangerous.
Stress is one of the major triggers for diabetes. High levels of stress can have grave impact on glucose levels, causing the blood sugar to shoot.
Developing healthy habits is the way forward. Take six-seven hours of sleep at night. Yoga and meditation will help your body rejuvenate and feel fresher. Try painting or gardening when free. Cultivate the habit of reading.
Go shopping or socialize with friends. All these things are repeated every now and then. Wonder why? Because these actually work!
- Regular Health Check-Ups
Diabetes is a disease. To avoid it, there is no better way than keeping a track of your bodily changes.
It is difficult to detect Type 2 diabetes. You should regularly visit your doctor hence. Get yourself screened every now and then. It becomes even more important as you age or if you are suffering from obesity and other ailments.
A family history of diabetes essentially requires you to stay in touch with a doctor. Diabetes can attack both eyes and teeth besides other vital organs in the body.
It is advisable to keep a blood pressure and blood sugar machine at home. Kidney and liver examinations after the age of 40 are must every six months.
Diabetes is an intricate condition without a single cause. Hereditary factors do leave certain people exposed to it. Others get affected due to weather, viruses and most importantly, a poor lifestyle.
While it’s beyond our control to deal with the first, we can easily change our style of living.
Global healthcare is in jeopardy simply because we always underestimate the power of prevention.
It’s time to get started!