What I should do for the prevention of diabetes?Diabetes prevention is proven, possible, and powerful. Studies show that people at high risk for type 2 diabetes can prevent or delay the onset of the disease by losing 5 to 7 percent of their body weight. You can do it by eating healthier and getting 30 minutes of physical activity 5 days a week. You can do a lot to lower your chances of getting diabetes. Exercising regularly, reducing fat and calorie intake, and losing weight can all help you reduce your risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
Lowering blood pressure and cholesterol levels also help you stay healthy. Making big changes in your life is hard, especially if you are faced with more than one change. You can make it easier by taking these steps:
- Make a plan to change behavior.
- Decide exactly what you will do and when you will do it.
- Plan what you need to get ready.
- Think about what might prevent you from reaching your goals.
- Find family and friends who will support and encourage you.
- Decide how you will reward yourself when you do what you have planned.
Your doctor, a dietitian, or a counselor can help you make a plan. Here are some of the areas you may wish to change to reduce your risk of diabetes.
Reach and maintain a reasonable body weight
Your weight affects your health in many ways. Being overweight can keep your body from making and using insulin properly. It can also cause high blood pressure. If you are overweight or obese, choose sensible ways to get in shape:
- Avoid crash diets. Instead, eat less of the foods you usually have. Limit the amount of fat you eat.
- Increase your physical activity. Aim for at least 30 minutes of exercise most days of the week.
- Set a reasonable weight-loss goal, such as losing 1 pound a week. Aim for a long-term goal of losing at least 7 percent of your total body weight.
Make wise food choices most of the time
What you eat has a big impact on your health. By making wise food choices, you can help control your body weight, blood pressure, and cholesterol.
- Take a hard look at the serving sizes of the foods you eat. Reduce serving sizes of main courses (such as meat), desserts, and foods high in fat. Increase the amount of fruits and vegetables.
- Limit your fat intake to about 25 percent of your total calories. For example, if your food choices add up to about 2,000 calories a day, try to eat no more than 56 grams of fat. Your doctor or a dietitian can help you figure out how much fat to have. You can check food labels for fat content too.
- You may also wish to reduce the number of calories you have each day. Your doctor or dietitian can help you with a meal plan that emphasizes weight loss.
- Keep a food and exercise log. Write down what you eat, how much you exercise--anything that helps keep you on track.
- When you meet your goal, reward yourself with a nonfood item or activity, like watching a movie.
Be physically active every day
Regular exercise tackles several risk factors at once. It helps you lose weight, keeps your cholesterol and blood pressure under control, and helps your body use insulin effectively. People in the DPP who were physically active for 30 minutes a day reduced their risk of type 2 diabetes. Many chose brisk walking for exercise.
If you are not very active, you should start slowly, talking with your doctor first about what kinds of exercise would be safe for you. Make a plan to increase your activity level toward the goal of being active for at least 30 minutes a day most days of the week.
Choose activities you enjoy. Here are some ways to work extra activity into your daily routine:
- Take the stairs rather than an elevator or escalator.
- Park at the far end of the lot and walk.
- Get off the bus a few stops early and walk the rest of the way.
- Walk or bicycle instead of drive whenever you can.
Take your prescribed medications
Some people need medication to help control their blood pressure or cholesterol levels. If you do, take your medicines as directed. Ask your doctor whether there are any medicines you can take to prevent type 2 diabetes.
If you have kidney damage, the liquid, called a contrast agent, used for special x-ray tests can make your kidney damage worse. Your doctor can give you extra water before and after the x-ray to protect your kidneys. Or your doctor may decide to order a test that does not use a contrast agent.
To help prevent type 2 diabetes, control your weight, exercise daily, and eat a healthy diet. A healthy diet includes a balance of all the food groups, with less fatty foods, foods lower in cholesterol, and more foods rich in fiber. Too much fat or cholesterol and inactivity can make you overweight and prevent your body from functioning effectively. Not being able to regulate blood sugar correctly is one effect. Cut down on fat and cholesterol by choosing low-fat dairy products, lean cuts of meat, more fish and poultry without the skin, and margarine instead of butter. Also, limit foods high in salt and sugar.
More information on diabetes mellitusWhat is diabetes mellitus? - Diabetes mellitus is a a condition characterized by hyperglycemia resulting from the body's inability to use blood glucose for energy. Diabetes mellitus can result in coma. Over time, complications can include nerve injury, blindness, kidney failure, and premature atherosclerosis with all of its complications.
What causes diabetes mellitus? - Diabetes mellitus is a disorder caused by insufficient production of the hormone insulin by the pancreas, or insensitivity of cells to the effects of insulin. Insulin is responsible for the absorption of glucose into cells for their energy needs and into the liver and fat cells for storage.
What is insulin? - Insulin is a hormone that is produced by specialized cells (beta cells) of the pancreas. In addition to helping glucose enter the cells, insulin is also important in tightly regulating the level of glucose in the blood.
What types of diabetes mellitus are there? - There are four main types of diabetes mellitus. They are type 1 diabetes mellitus, type 2 diabetes mellitus, type 3, and Gestational diabetes mellitus (type 4).
What is type 1 diabetes? - Formerly known as juvenile diabetes or insulin-dependent diabetes, type 1 diabetes is a life-long condition in which the pancreas stops making insulin. Type 1 diabetes develops most often in young people but can appear in adults.
What is type 2 diabetes? - Type 2 diabetes is the most common form of diabetes mellitus. People with type 2 diabetes produce insulin, but either do not make enough insulin or their bodies do not use the insulin they make. Type 2, also known as non-insulin dependent diabetes, typically occurs after the age of 40 years.
What're signs and symptoms of diabetes mellitus? - Type 2 diabetes almost always has a slow onset (often years). Early symptoms of Type 1 diabetes are often polyuria (frequent urination) and polydipsia (increased thirst, and consequent increased fluid intake).
What is diabetes insipidus? - Diabetes insipidus (DI) is a disease characterized by excretion of large amounts of severely diluted urine, which cannot be reduced when fluid intake is reduced.
What is diabetic coma? - Diabetic coma is a medical emergency in which a person with diabetes is unconscious because the blood glucose level is too low or too high. Patients with diabetes mellitus type 1 are especially prone to this condition.
What are the complications of diabetes mellitus? - Many people with diabetes mellitus eventually develop complications. A very common short-term complication of diabetes mellitus is hypoglycemia (abnormally low blood sugar levels).
How to diagnose diabetes mellitus? - The diagnosis of type 1 diabetes is usually prompted by recent symptoms of excessive urination (polyuria) and excessive thirst (polydipsia), often accompanied by weight loss. The diagnosis of other types of diabetes is made in many other ways.
Diagnosis protocol for diabetes - People over age 45 should be tested for diabetes. If the first blood glucose test is normal, they should be re-tested every three years. A diagnosis of diabetes is made when any three of these tests is positive, followed by a second positive test on a different day.
What is the treatment for diabetes? - Diabetes is a chronic disease with no cure, but it can almost always be managed effectively. Nowadays, the goal for diabetics is to avoid or minimize chronic diabetic complications, as well as to avoid acute problems of hyperglycemia or hypoglycemia.
What type of diabetes diet is suggested? - For some people with diabetes mellitus, a healthy diet and weight loss is enough to keep glucose levels in the blood normal.
What medications are available for diabetes? - Oral diabetes medicines, or oral hypoglycemics, can lower blood glucose in people who have diabetes, but are able to make some insulin. Six FDA-approved oral diabetes medications are now on the market.
How to prevent diabetes? - Diabetes prevention is proven, possible, and powerful. Studies show that people at high risk for type 2 diabetes can prevent or delay the onset of the disease by losing 5 to 7 percent of their body weight.
What should a child diabetes do every day? - To control diabetes and prevent complications, blood glucose levels must be as close to a "normal" range as safely possible. Families should work with a health care provider to help set a child's or teen's targets for blood glucose levels.
Smoking and diabetes - There is a growing body of evidence to suggest that smoking is an independent risk factor for diabetes and that among people with diabetes, smoking aggravates the risk of serious disease and premature death.