Updated: Nov 10, 2021
National Diabetes Month is a great time to recognize that one in five people have the condition but don't know it. A recent study found that 34 million Americans have diabetes, which ranks seventh among leading causes of death in America with good news being you can manage this disease and even prevent some cases through awareness! Everyone knows that diabetes is a serious condition, but what many people aren't aware of is the fact that pre-diabetes can be even more dangerous. Pre-diabetes means your blood sugar levels are high, but not high enough to warrant an official diagnosis of type 2 diabetes yet. This puts you at risk for developing heart disease, stroke and other complications related to elevated blood sugars. Fortunately there are some lifestyle changes you can make today to reduce or eliminate this risk altogether! Here's how:
1. Eat breakfast every day:
Skipping meals sets you up for failure when it comes to managing your weight and insulin levels. Eating breakfast will get your metabolism going and set the stage for healthy eating all day long.
2. Eat a healthy diet:
What you eat has a direct effect on your blood sugar and diabetes risk. Your body needs glucose for energy, but too much glucose in the blood can damage many tissues and organs over time. If blood sugar levels remain high over time, it is known as pre-diabetes or diabetes.
3. Get regular screenings for diabetes risk factors like cholesterol levels, blood pressure, or blood sugar levels:
If you have any of these conditions in addition to pre-diabetes, you will need to treat them in order to control your risk for heart disease and stroke . It's also important to take steps now to manage diet and exercise if you're overweight or obese.
4. Lose weight if you are overweight or obese:
Being overweight increases the risk of developing pre-diabetes, which in turn makes it more likely that your blood sugar will progress to full-blown diabetes. Aim for a healthy body mass index (BMI) , calculated by dividing your weight in kilograms by your height in meters squared. If this is too much, ask a doctor or a trainer at the gym.
5. Exercise regularly (at least 30 minutes of moderate activity on most days):
Regular physical activity can help you control your weight and blood sugar which, in turn helps decrease pre-diabetes. Additionally it improves cardiovascular fitness, muscle strength and endurance. Walking is a great aerobic exercise that almost anyone should be able to do comfortably with their own two feet while Jumping rope also delivers an amazing workout! If exercising isn't something that has been part of life lately then talk to doctor before starting any programs because not doing so could lead toward illness or injury.
6. Get tested for diabetes two if you are at risk or have any symptoms:
The best way to stay healthy and in control is by getting tested for diabetes regularly. If you have a family history of this disease, your doctor will test at every visit; make sure he or she does too!
You should get tested often if they are worried about their blood sugar levels - it's important not only because there may be something wrong but also so that people with high-risk genes can take preventative measures early on before problems develop later down the line
7. Manage your stress:
If you have pre-diabetes, then stress is going to make it ten times worse. It has been shown that when people experience a lot of chronic anxiety or worry they produce more insulin than average people do--and excess levels lead on their own without intervention! This can be minimized with methods like yoga and meditation which will help keep the body's systems functioning smoothly while also improving mental clarity for success at work or home. Yoga provides an excellent full body stretch (which we all need) along with deep breathing exercises designed specifically around each area being stretched; these sessions promote relaxation by training us how breathe properly through our noses rather than mouth.
The best way to lower your risk of diabetes is by eating a healthy diet, getting regular screenings for diabetes-related risks factors like cholesterol levels, blood pressure or blood sugar levels. It's also important to lose weight if you are overweight or obese and get at least 30 minutes of physical activity on most days. If you have any symptoms that might be related to diabetes such as excessive thirst, frequent urination or fatigue then it’s very important that you get tested for the disease two times in one year--once when there are no symptoms and once after developing them. Lastly, managing stress can help decrease your risk of developing this chronic illness so try using some relaxation techniques during stressful moments throughout the day!
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