Tips for Coping With Diabetes Type 1 and 2
A diagnosis of diabetes is not a death sentence. Millions of people are not only living with type I or II diabetes, they are thriving. When coping with diabetes type 1 and 2, diet is one of the most important aspects. If a person can get their diet under control, they can conquer the symptoms of diabetes for a much healthier life. Aside from prescription medication, there are steps a person can take to ensure their health is protected. Thankfully, it is not that difficult to gain control and avoid detrimental health concerns.
What Role Does Diet Play in Diabetes Management?
One of the biggest factors in diabetes management is nutrition. Foods can greatly affect blood sugar levels and it is crucial diabetes patients understand how. It is not enough to simply remove sugar from your diet. While sugar can greatly increase blood sugar levels, carbohydrates of any type can as well. Although one needs to monitor their diet carefully, this does not mean they cannot enjoy eating. A person can still enjoy sweet treats, pasta, and even bread as long as they know how to use portion control to their advantage.
To understand how food can affect the blood sugar levels, it is important to understand the glycemic index. The glycemic index measures how a carbohydrate affects the blood sugar level. The higher the glycemic index of the food, the greater the potential of blood sugar spikes. To control glucose levels in the blood, it is important a diabetic primarily chooses low glycemic index carbohydrates. Examples of carbohydrates with low glycemic indexes include:
- Dried beans and legumes such as lentils and pintos
- All non-starchy vegetables
- Most fruits
- Whole grain bread and cereals
- Sweet potatoes
Foods like white bread, white rice, cornflakes, white potatoes, popcorn, pineapple, and melons should be eaten in moderation. When eaten on an occasional basis, these high glycemic index foods can still be enjoyed without causing major health concerns in those with type I or type II diabetes. With portion control, a person can enjoy a wide variety of foods and special treats without compromising their health.
Ideally, a diabetic’s plate should be half filled with non-starchy vegetables. It is especially important to eat green leafy vegetables since these contain high levels of polyphenols, vitamin C, and magnesium which helps to prevent blood sugar spikes and ensures insulin levels remain where they should be. When discussing diets for diabetes, one does not have to place themselves on a strict diet, instead, they simply need to learn the list of foods that are good choices for diabetics so there is less guesswork.
- Non-starchy vegetables
- Egg whites
What Should Diabetics Avoid When Overhauling Their Diet?
One should avoid empty calorie drinks like soda and sweetened teas. These drinks do nothing to fill you up. All they do is raise your blood glucose levels and cause your thirst to increase. Instead of drinking empty calories, it can be beneficial to infuse your water with fresh fruits like strawberries and blueberries. When learning how to deal with diabetes, removing these sugar spikers from the diet will make a big difference.
It is also important diabetics avoid eating fast food. While it may be tempting to stop and grab that burger instead of having to cook, these foods often contain higher than normal amounts of carbohydrates, along with being full of chemicals. Cooking at home can help a person to control the ingredients and their portion size.
For the most part, prepackaged foods should be avoided as they are often packed with sugar, even if they are a savory food. Prepackaged foods are also generally higher in calories, fat, and salt which can cause other concerns with a diabetic’s health.
Exercise Is Also a Key to Controlling Diabetes
As a part of following the diabetes management guidelines, exercise should be a key component. Through physical activity, the insulin in the body is better able to manage the glucose and bring it into the muscles and cells for energy. Exercise greatly assists the body in controlling blood glucose levels and managing insulin production. The key is to know what type of exercise is appropriate for each type of diabetes. It is crucial a person speaks with their doctor to determine what type of physical activity will be most beneficial and will not place their health at further risk.
Ideally, one should participate in thirty to sixty minutes of moderate physical activity a day. It is important to find a safe activity one enjoys doing since they are more likely to stick with their exercise plan for the best results. When it comes to managing diabetes and exercise, it is crucial to get the heart rate up so that the body is benefiting from the activity. Walking, swimming, dancing, and aerobics are all good choices.
Using these tips will make coping with diabetes type 1 and 2 much easier. Through the right diet and exercise plan, diabetics can control their blood glucose levels, lose weight, improve their strength, and decrease the symptoms caused by diabetes. Talking with your doctor about your diet and exercise plan will keep you on track to better health.
Find Out How To Cope With Hypertension And Overcome It
If you are one of the millions of men and women who are suffering from higher than normal blood pressure you need to learn how to cope with hypertension.
What is probably more important is that if you have not had your blood pressure checked recently you must do. There are millions of people who currently have blood pressure levels which are far higher than they should be and who do not even know they have the problem.
What is hypertension?
Your blood pressure is the amount of force blood pushing against blood vessel walls brings. One of the major jobs of your heart is to pump blood into your arteries and these blood vessels then carry blood throughout your body.
If you are suffering from hypertension it is dangerous because your heart has to work that much harder to pump blood to your body. This effect can cause the hardening of arteries and bring heart failure on.
It is known that men suffer from hypertension more than women do. Being overweight is a major cause and the more excess weight you are carrying the more prone you are to this condition.
Blood pressure readings
These are extremely straight forward to take and consist of a top number (known as systolic) and a bottom number (known as diastolic). What should blood pressure be? You will find that reading under the ‘normal’ header – any of the others should be treated with caution.
Normal = Less than 120 over 80 (you will generally see this written as 120/80)
Pre-hypertension = 120-139 over 80-89
Stage 1 high blood pressure = 140-159 over 90-99
Stage 2 high blood pressure = 160++ over 100++
Those people who are over the age of 60 – If you have readings of 150++ over 90++ your levels are too high.
Anyone with readings which are higher than ‘normal’ really should seek advice from their doctor as to how to bring levels back to normal.
What can cause hypertension?
The exact causes are unknown, but there are factors which are understood to contribute to this condition.
We have already touched on being overweight or obese; smoking is a cause as is excess alcohol consumption. Lack of exercise, too much salt in your diet, stress and old age are all thought to be contributing factors.
Such things as genetics, a family history of hypertension, adrenal or thyroid disorders as well as chronic kidney disease also play a part.
Some people with hypertension are known as being “salt sensitive”. This means that if they take anything more than the minimum amount of salt their body needs it will be too much for them and will increase their blood pressure.
To reinforce this ‘salt’ link one needs to look at the people living on the northern islands of Japan. They eat more salt per head than anyone else in the world and have the highest incidence of hypertension. You can contrast this with people who do not add salt to their food and they will show virtually no signs of hypertension.
How to cope with hypertension?
The first thing is that you need to face up to the fact you have this problem. You then need to take steps to improve your diet and exercise regimen.
Hypertension is an extremely common problem and your doctor will have many suggestions as to how you can bring yours down.
In terms of diet there is an extremely effective diet known as the DASH diet which, when followed can reduce your blood pressure levels in as little as two weeks. This may require willpower and determination from your side, but it is far better than the alternative you could be faced with!
Home blood pressure monitors
While it should not be a great problem to get to your doctor’s surgery on a regular basis you can take things into your own hands by investing in a monitor for home use. The acknowledged leaders in this field are Omron. Here is what they can offer.
Omron Blood Pressure Monitors
The Omron monitors are consistently ranked as the most trusted in the USA. This is verified by health professionals and consumers alike.
Further proof of this is the company’s position in the market and that they have sold over 100 million blood pressure unit worldwide.
In terms of home use their range of monitors offer real quality, reliability and accuracy. There are 21 upper arm monitors and 5 wrist monitors to choose from, as well as models which allow connectivity to an electronic device such as a laptop.
These monitors offer patented technology and you should expect accurate result each and every time you use them. To confirm the company’s high standing in the health market place you just need to understand that the company’s monitors are used in 50 pct of all clinical trials and national health surveys carried out worldwide.
Their patented technology and high standing in the health market mean you will get exact results every time. If further proof of this were needed just consider the fact that the company’s monitors are used in 50% of all clinical trials and national health surveys carried out worldwide.
Top 3 Most Popular Blood Pressure Monitors at Amazon
- Omron 10 Series Wireless Upper Arm Blood Pressure Monitor with Cuff that fits Standard and Large Arms (BP786) with Bluetooth Smart Connectivity
- Omron 7 Series Wrist Blood Pressure Monitor (Model BP652) Clinically Proven Accurate with Heart Zone Guidance and Irregular Heartbeat Detector
- Omron 5 Series Upper Arm Blood Pressure Monitor with Cuff that fits Standard and Large Arms (BP742N)
Benefits of home monitoring
If you monitor at home you can get into a regular routine which will ensure that you are on top of your blood pressure levels constantly. Dependent upon the home machine you choose you can do a whole variety of things in terms of keeping records and historical data.
You can also keep a log of the improvements you are making to your diet and your exercise regimen to see how effective they are. Such data and information can be taken to your doctor for them to consider where improvements can be made, or if you are on the right track to bringing those blood pressure levels back down.
There are many ways in terms of how to cope with hypertension and being proactive is one of the most important things you can do. Please do not ignore this potential problem when there are many things you can do to correct this potentially fatal condition.
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