Diabetes influences every aspect of life, from food preparation and family planning to relationships and conversations in the workplace, but don’t let it overwhelm you. There are several simple things you can do every day to manage your condition.
Type 1 and 2
The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases explains that when you have type 1, your body's immune system has attacked and destroyed the cells that create insulin. However, when you have type 2, your body doesn’t use the insulin it makes correctly. No matter which type you have, you’ll have to accept that your lifestyle will be different.
Living with diabetes
Many people don’t realize what type 1 or type 2 diabetics go through daily. Constantly checking glucose levels, thinking about what to eat, worrying about how stress will affect their blood sugar levels, and explaining the difference between type 1 and type 2 comes with the territory. Although it can be tiring, committing to a diabetic lifestyle will make it easier.
Committing to a lifestyle
It’s possible for your condition to smoothly fit into your life. Experts adjust their meals, test their blood glucose routinely and track their activity and medication with ease. Work your condition into your lifestyle, and eventually it will all come naturally. Read on to learn five simple but effective tricks for handling your condition day in and day out.
Remember your ABCs and consult experts
Understanding the diabetic ABCs—A1C test, blood pressure and cholesterol—and gathering information is the first step toward living with it. The best way to start is by talking to medical professionals and experts. Experts are not just health professionals; they are people who share your condition. Those who experience your situation daily can be informative and reassuring.
Always carry a bag
Keep supplies like testing strips, medication, lancets, syringes, glucose tablets, juice, replacement batteries for your glucose meter or an extra pen for recording your glucose levels on hand in case of emergency. Carry them in a travel or cosmetics bag to keep everything organized and accessible.
Take advantage of technology
According to the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention, nearly 10 percent of the population is diabetic. Therefore, there is a plethora of technology at your fingertips, including health apps, fully portable glucose monitors and online resources. For example, BG Monitor Diabetes for Android is perfect for calculating how much insulin you need, setting reminders and organizing your new world.
Involve your friends and family
It is common for people to experience an array of emotions after a diagnosis. If you feel comfortable, enlist the support of your friends and family. Communicate to them that you want them to be involved in managing your condition - for example, by helping you keep an exercise schedule.
Make dietary adjustments
Make some simple food and drink adjustments. Include key components like fresh fruits, non-starch vegetables, beans and legumes, lean meats and proteins, and nonfat dairy foods, and avoid sugary foods and alcohol. In addition to managing your condition, this will help you improve your overall health.
Other helpful hints include establishing a routine, getting checkups, exercising, getting plenty of sleep and managing stress. Most importantly, don't let your condition keep you from doing anything you want to do. It's your life - take control of it!