Diabetes is among the diseases that have affected many people worldwide, with Type 2 diabetes being the most common. Diabetes has no known cure, but you can prevent yourself from getting it, especially if you have any risk factors like excess weight, a family history of diabetes, or are diagnosed with prediabetes.
Prediabetes is when you have high blood sugar levels but not high enough for the doctor to diagnose you with diabetes.
Some of the things you can do to prevent getting diabetes include:
Lose Excess Weight
Excess weight is one of the most common risk factors for getting diabetes. However, a small weight loss percentage can help reduce the high chances of getting diabetes. According to a recent study, people who lost 7% of their body weight reduced their chances of getting diabetes by 60%.
Before starting your weight loss journey, ensure to talk to your doctor. They will help you develop the best way to lose weight and reasonable weight loss goals.
Exercising helps you lose weight, boost your insulin sensitivity, and lower your blood sugar levels, which reduces your chances of developing diabetes, especially in the prediabetes stage. Exercises will also help manage symptoms of type 2 diabetes if you already have it.
For a healthy exercise regime, aim to achieve at least 30 minutes of aerobic exercises daily, like walking, jogging, biking, or swimming. You should also include resistance training two to three times a week to help increase your balance and strength. This includes weight lifting, calisthenics, and yoga.
Before taking up any exercise, talk to a personal trainer and your doctor. They will help you determine which exercises are the best for you. The trainer will also show you how to do each exercise correctly to prevent hurting yourself and get the most out of it.
If you work in a stationary position like working on the computer, try breaking that up with walking breaks.
Eat a Healthy Diet
Limit refined carbohydrates and sugar from your diet to help you maintain healthy blood sugar levels. Some foods to avoid include white bread, many breakfast cereals, and sweets. Instead, substitute those with whole meals that will provide fiber and keep you feeling fuller for longer.
Whole foods include whole-grain rice, whole-wheat pasta, quinoa, and whole oats. Fiber helps promote weight loss and reduces the absorption of sugars, keeping you safe from diabetes. Other foods rich in fiber include fruits like tomatoes and legumes like chickpeas and beans.
You should also include healthy or unsaturated fats in your diet. Some good sources of unsaturated fats include fatty fish like mackerel and salmon, nuts like almonds and peanuts, and seeds like sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds.
It would help if you also monitored your portions. Eating large portions increases the rate of absorption, causing high insulin and blood sugar levels.
Finally, cut off alcohol and smoking. Tobacco causes high blood sugar levels, which could result in insulin resistance. According to Tandem Diabetes, it also increases symptoms of type 2 diabetes. Alcohol, on the other hand, causes pancreatic inflammation, which impairs the ability of the pancreas to produce insulin.
Get Enough Rest
Several studies have linked insufficient sleep with high insulin resistance cases, making it harder to lose weight. Sleeping helps prevent this and gives your body enough energy to heal and recover from exercises.
While doing all of the above, you should also see your doctor often. They help gauge your blood sugar levels and advise you of any other lifestyle changes that could help improve your diabetes-free life.