According to a 2014 report by the World Health Organization (WHO), around 422 million people worldwide have diabetes, and its prevalence rises in middle and low-income countries. If you’re reading this, you’re probably part of the statistic (or know someone who is). Furthermore, you may already be well-aware of how diabetes can affect one’s overall quality of life: from the never-ending maintenance to avoid further complications, to symptoms of high or low blood sugar, and even increased risk in a plethora of diseases, to name a few. However, being diagnosed with diabetes doesn’t have to be a major blow, as it’s still entirely possible for you to live a normal and healthy life as a diabetic person.
While it’s true that you’ll need to take some extra precautions, adopt lifestyle changes, and add new routines, you can live out the rest of your life as a healthy person despite having diabetes, and these tips are a right place for you to start:
#1 Eat Healthy Food in Healthy Portions
When you have diabetes, you don’t only have to watch out for your food portions, but the food itself; you’ll need to be extra careful about the food you’re eating and how much of it you’re eating to keep your blood sugar in check. You should limit food that is high in sugar and fat and also be wary of your carb intake (as it turns into sugar). Your diet should be composed mostly of vegetables and fruits, as well as whole grains and lean meat. There are hundreds of dietary meal plans for people with diabetes online for you to choose from, or you can consult a diabetes dietitian to help you in making a well-tailored meal plan that takes your medication, lifestyle, and even budget into account.
#2 Sweat Out
Getting fatigued quickly is quite common among people with diabetes, which makes it understandably hard to work out and stay in shape. However, despite this, people with diabetes need to have incorporate exercise into their daily routine to manage their ailment and live a normal and healthy life. If you find doing heavy workouts at the gym difficult, try starting with something easier but can still make you sweat and engage your lungs such as brisk walking, swimming, dancing, biking, or even gardening. The American Diabetes Association (ADA) recommends having at least two and a half hours of moderate or vigorous physical activity each week.
#3 Frequent Checkups
When you have diabetes, you increase the risk of getting other diseases. As such, you should make it schedule your medical checkups more frequently (at least twice a year) to keep track of your health and to detect and address any issues as early as possible.
#4 Pay Attention to Your Eyes
You should also make sure to visit your eye doctor at least once a year as diabetes can result in various eye conditions such as diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma, and diabetic macular oedema, to name a few. However, even if you’re already suffering from these eye complications, you shouldn’t lose hope. Advancements in the medical field have made it possible for you to easily buy smart glasses that help restore your vision when you’re afflicted with diabetic eye disease.
While it can be very challenging to achieve a normal and healthy life when you have diabetes, it can still be possible to do so by following these tips. However, this may only cover the physical aspect of your well-being, so you may also want to find ways to help yourself cope by joining diabetic support groups or getting professional assistance.