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Diabetes is the most talked about lifestyle disease in our country today. In fact, deaths relating to diabetes are on a steep raise.
Did you that India is known as the 'Diabetes capital of the world'? Surprising, isn't it? That's because India is home to the most diabetics in the world.
Diabetes is caused by our body's inability to properly use insulin, which converts the sugars in our food to energy. This is caused by low production of the hormone in our body or the body developing insulin sensitivity.
Diabetes is most often a lifestyle-related disease caused by unhealthy eating habits and obesity. It is also a hereditary disease, known to run in the family for generations.
Diabetes is a silent killer. It is a disease that slowly affects the entire body. Diabetes is closely related to heart diseases. It also contributes to high blood pressure. Diabetes is also a leading cause of strokes.
Diabetes causes diabetic retinopathy, which is the most common reason for blindness in diabetics. It affects the functions of the kidneys as well due to high blood pressure.
Therefore, it is important to manage the disease before it causes more damage to the body.
Diabetics have to constantly monitor their blood sugar levels. Most of the diabetics have to live off insulin injections. For others, it is possible to manage the disease through some lifestyle changes.
Here are a few pointers that will help you lead a healthy lifestyle and manage diabetes easily, take a look.
1)Avoid Processed Foods:
Processed food is stripped away of all its nutritional value. They have almost no amounts of vitamins, minerals and fibre. Also, they are easily digested by our body, which suddenly raise the blood sugar levels at an alarming rate. The less processed any food is, the healthier it is.
2) Make Way For Exercise Every Day:
Exercise helps maintain blood sugar levels in the body. It helps utilise the glucose in the body, which the body is not able to turn into energy. Also, it helps maintain a healthy weight, which will help you manage the disease better. Regular exercise also increases the insulin sensitivity in the body and goes a long way in preventing heart diseases.
3) Avoid Stress:
Stress makes us eat more of unhealthy food, which will definitely not help with diabetes. Also, the glucose in our body increases when we are under stress. Prolonged stress may have serious affect on the heart and also damage other internal organs. People in stress may forget to eat on time or take their medicines, which in turn will make it difficult to manage diabetes.
4) Healthy Diet:
Regular exercise and a healthy diet is the best way to manage diabetes. When you eat healthy, your weight is under control and your blood sugar levels also stay stable. Eating healthy meals in portions throughout the day will keep you full and active, and also increase the body's insulin sensitivity.
5) Avoid Sitting For Too Long:
Recent studies have shown that sitting in a place for too long can double the risk of diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. Diabetics have excess glucose in their blood, which the body will not be able to convert into energy. This glucose can harm the internal organs if it stays in the bloodstream for long. When we are moving around, the glucose is utilised and thus the blood sugar levels decrease automatically. Therefore, it is advised to avoid sitting in one place for long and simply walking will also help manage your diabetes.
6) Drinking Plenty Of Water:
Drinking water at regular intervals is known to cut the risk of high blood sugar. When our body is dehydrated, a hormone called vasopressin increases. This hormone makes the liver to hold onto the water and pushes the liver to produce more blood sugar. The constant strain on the liver may eventually lead to decreased secretion of insulin or its sensitivity.
7) Regular Check-up:
Getting yourself regularly checked up is the best way to manage diabetes. Regular check-ups will help you monitor your blood sugar, so that you can adjust your diet accordingly. Diabetes has the potential to cause serious damage to our internal organs and regular check-ups will ensure that everything is under control.
8) Avoid Alcohol And Smoking:
People with diabetes have a higher risk of heart diseases and stroke and smoking just doubles up that risk. Excess blood sugar and smoking both damage the wall of the arteries and make the blood vessels narrow, increasing the risk of heart attacks. Alcoholic drinks are highly calorific, which leads to weight gain. They also put a pressure on the kidney, which may lead to their failure.
9) Sleep Well:
Having a good night's sleep helps regulate your blood sugar levels. Sleeping less is known to cause insulin insensitivity in our body. Sleeping well during the night will keep you active throughout the day and also keep your hunger pangs at bay.
10) Maintain A Healthy Weight:
Excess weight is the biggest enemy of diabetes. When we consume extra calories, it puts pressure on the liver to produce more insulin to convert all the excess sugar into glucose. This slowly decreases the ability of the liver to produce insulin and eventually leads to diabetes. Therefore, it is safe to say that excess weight is the root cause of diabetes.