Making a few simple changes in your lifestyle now may help you avoid the serious health complications of diabetes in the future,
Diabetes is a chronic disease that affects millions of people worldwide. Uncontrolled cases lead to blindness, kidney failure, heart disease, and other serious conditions.
The good news is that you can prevent diabetes, and we’re all set to show you how. All it takes is a few lifestyle changes and we promise you they are easy. We have put together some tips that tell you how to prevent diabetes. You’ll find them below.
These same changes also lower the risks of heart disease and some cancers. The key to prevention can be boiled down to five words: Stay lean and stay active.
How To Prevent Diabetes In 10 Easy Tips
Control your weight
Excess weight is the single most important cause of type 2 diabetes. Being overweight increases your chances of developing type 2 diabetes seven-fold. Also, being obese makes you 20 to 40 times more likely to develop diabetes than someone with a healthy weight.
Losing weight can help if your weight is above the healthy-weight range. In fact, losing 7-10% of your current weight can cut your chances of developing type 2 diabetes in half.
Get moving—and turn off the television
Inactivity promotes diabetes. Working your muscles more often and making them work harder improves their ability to use insulin and absorb glucose. And this puts less stress on your insulin-making cells. So trade some of your sit-time for fit-time.
You don’t need long bouts of hot, sweaty exercise to reap this benefit. Findings from research suggest that walking briskly for a half-hour every day reduces the risk of developing type 2 diabetes by 30%.
Television-watching appears to be an especially-detrimental form of inactivity: Every two hours you spend watching TV instead increases your chances of developing diabetes by 20%; it also increases your risk of heart disease (15%) and early death (13%).
Tune Up Your Diet
Four dietary changes can have a big impact on the risk of diabetes. This is how to prevent diabetes:
1. Choose whole grains and whole-grain products over refined grains and other highly processed carbohydrates.
2. Skip the sugary drinks, and choose water, coffee, or tea instead.
3. Choose healthy fats.
4. Limit red meat and avoid processed meat; choose nuts, beans, whole grains, poultry, or fish instead.
Add diabetes to the long list of health problems linked with smoking. Smokers are roughly 50% more likely to develop diabetes than nonsmokers, and heavy smokers have an even higher risk.
Light to moderate alcohol consumption
Evidence has consistently linked moderate alcohol consumption with reduced risk of heart disease. The same may be true for diabetes. Moderate amounts of alcohol increase the efficiency of insulin at getting glucose inside cells. So that’s like a drink a day for women, and up to two drinks a day for men.
And some studies indicate that moderate alcohol consumption decreases the risk of diabetes. But excess alcohol intake actually increases the risk. If you already drink alcohol, the key is to keep your consumption in the moderate range, because higher amounts of alcohol could increase diabetes risk. If you don’t drink alcohol, there’s no need to start. You can get the same benefits by losing weight, exercising more, and changing your eating patterns.
See your doctor for regular check-ups.
As you get older, it’s a good idea to regularly check your blood glucose, blood pressure and blood cholesterol levels.
Drink Water as Your Primary Beverage to Prevent Diabetes
Water is by far the most natural beverage you can drink. What’s more, sticking with water most of the time helps you avoid beverages that are high in sugar, preservatives and other questionable ingredients.
Sugary beverages like soda and punch have been linked to an increased risk of both type 2 diabetes and latent autoimmune diabetes of adults (LADA).
Watch Portion Sizes
Whether or not you decide to follow a low-carb diet, it’s important to avoid large portions of food to reduce the risk of diabetes, especially if you are overweight.
Eating too much food at one time causes higher blood sugar and insulin levels in people at risk of diabetes. On the other hand, decreasing portion sizes may help prevent this type of response.
Optimize Vitamin D Levels
Vitamin D is important for blood sugar control. Indeed, studies have found that people who don’t get enough vitamin D, or whose blood levels are too low, have a greater risk of all types of diabetes.
Most health organizations recommend maintaining a vitamin D blood level of at least 30 ng/ml (75 nmol/l).
Consider Taking These Natural Herbs
There are a few herbs that may help increase insulin sensitivity and reduce the likelihood of diabetes progression.
Curcumin is a component of the bright gold spice turmeric, which is one of the main ingredients in curries. It has strong anti-inflammatory properties and has been used in India for centuries as part of Ayurvedic medicine.
Healthline , CDC
This article was first published on AfricaParent.com