What is Diabetes?
Diabetes can strike anyone, from any walk of life.
And it does – in numbers that are dramatically increasing. In the last decade, the cases of people living with diabetes jumped almost 50 percent – to more than 29 million Americans.
Worldwide, it afflicts more than 380 million people. And the World Health Organization estimates that by 2030, that number of people living with diabetes will more than double.
Today, diabetes takes more lives than AIDS and breast cancer combined — claiming the life of 1 American every 3 minutes. It is a leading cause of blindness, kidney failure, amputations, heart failure and stroke.
Living with diabetes places an enormous emotional, physical and financial burden on the entire family. Annually, diabetes costs the American public more than $245 billion.
Just what is diabetes?
To answer that, you first need to understand the role of insulin in your body.
When you eat, your body turns food into sugars, or glucose. At that point, your pancreas is supposed to release insulin.
Insulin serves as a “key” to open your cells, to allow the glucose to enter — and allow you to use the glucose for energy.
But with diabetes, this system does not work.
Several major things can go wrong – causing the onset of diabetes. Type 1 and type 2 diabetes are the most common forms of the disease, but there are also other kinds, such as gestational diabetes, which occurs during pregnancy, as well as other forms.
Best Health Tips For Diabetes Patient
1. SEEK GREEK
We know you’ve heard this before, but the staples of a Mediterranean diet — vegetables, fruits, legumes, whole grains, fish and red wine — are a good idea anytime. And supplementing that diet with extra-virgin olive oil can reduce your risk for type 2 diabetes by 30 percen
2. DON’T JUST SIT THERE
An extra two hours a day spent watching television increases your risk of developing type 2 diabetes by 14 percent, according to a report published in the Journal of the American Medical Association. Our suggestion: Exercise while watching, or run around the block between episodes.
3. HAVE A CUPPA
Numerous studies show that drinking more than two cups of coffee (16 ounces) a day is associated with a 25 percent lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes. The FDA maintains that up to 400 milligrams per day of caffeine (about four cups) is safe for healthy adults.
4. STRESS LESS
Chronic worry and stress not only contribute to insulin resistance but also make it harder for your pancreas to move glucose out of your bloodstream. Techniques proven to help you relax and reduce stressinclude biofeedback, meditation and deep breathing.
5. SQUEEZE SOME CITRUS
Eating oranges, grapefruit, lemons and other citrus fruits can slow glucose uptake, helping keep your blood sugar levels under control, a study in the journal Preventive Medicine concludes.
6. SPRINKLE WITH CINNAMON
Studies find that people with type 2 diabetes who eat one gram (just a pinch or light sprinkle) of this tasty spice every day may experience a drop in blood sugar. Try cinnamon on your morning cereal, in your coffee or dusted on yogurt.
7. FIX IT WITH FOOD
These foods eaten daily can help you manage your blood sugar:
- Beans, peas and lentils: One cup of these protein-rich legumes can lower your blood sugar levels significantly.
- Dark chocolate: It contains nutrients called flavonoids, which can both drop insulin levels and limit your cravings for sweet and salty foods.
- Oatmeal: The magnesium in it helps your body secrete insulin properly.
8. FLEX YOUR MUSCLES
A 2012 study in the Archives of Internal Medicine showed that men who lifted weights for at least 2 1/2 hours every week lowered their risk of diabetes by 34 percent.
9. MIND YOUR MEDS
If you’re already on medication for diabetes, it’s important to take it as prescribed. Plus, free apps such as Mango Health and Pocket Pharmacist can alert you to possible side effects from other prescription and nonprescription drugs you might be taking. Plenty of medications can interfere with your blood glucose levels.
10. LIMIT RED MEAT
An analysis of the diets of almost 150,000 people found that eating an extra half serving a day of red meat increases the risk of developing type 2 diabetes by 50 percent
Best Diet Tips for People with Diabetes
- Make wise food choices: The best tip for a diabetes diet focuses on choosing healthy food options instead of foods full of fats, carbohydrates, starch, sugar, and so on. For example, eat whole grain breads and cereals instead of refined flour.
- Limit sweets: Substituting sugary foods with other healthy alternatives such as fruit instead of ice-cream or pudding ranks second among our diabetes diet tips.
- Limit consumption of alcohol: Alcoholic drinks have no nutritional value, but contain a lot of calories.
- Eat less fat: Instead of butter or vegetable oils, use olive oil for cooking. Avoid fried foods; eat baked or grilled food instead.
- Eat plenty of whole grain foods, fruits, and vegetables: Include greater amount of fruits and vegetables in your diet, as these provide vitamins, minerals, and fiber.
- Eat often: Do not starve yourself or remain hungry, as this will encourage you to overeat when you do eat. This diet tip for diabetes will prevent hypoglycemia, the risky condition where sugar level in the blood falls below the normal range.
- Carefully control your intake of carbohydrates: Starches, fruits, and milk groups contain the highest amount of carbohydrates. Vegetables are low in carbohydrates.
- Eat a set amount of food: Do not overeat, nor starve yourself. Make use of measuring cups and spoons to ensure that your food servings are the right size.
- Stick to regular meal times: The best tip for a diabetes diet is to eat at regular intervals. Regular eating habits help your body regulate blood sugar levels.
- Avoid temptation: Keep your kitchen free of enticing food items.