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Diabetes in Adults

Can Diabetes Be Controlled?

Last modified: 
21/03/2012 - 17:57

Contributing Author: Guy Slowik FRCS

In the early stages, you may be able to control your diabetes without medication, by looking after yourself carefully. But if you are taking medication, taking care of yourself is just as important. It will help the medication work much better.

Things you can do to control your diabetes include:

Control your weight. For many people with diabetes, reducing weight is the single most important thing they can do.

  • Don't try quick weight loss diets. They won't work for long, and can be dangerous.
  • Do follow your diabetes team's advice, and lose weight slowly and steadily.
  • Don't get discouraged. Losing as little as 10 to 15 pounds may make a big difference in how you feel and how well your diabetes is controlled.

Eat on time, and eat well. Keep track of what you eat, when you eat, and how much you eat. Small, regular meals work best for most people who have diabetes.

Exercise three to four times a week. Exercise does three good things.

  • It helps control weight
  • It helps the cells use blood sugar
  • It helps prevent heart disease

Nice To Know:

Many people who have diabetes find that walking is the best exercise. Walking is easy, inexpensive, and enjoyable. Walking tips:

  • Try to walk at least three times a week.
  • Start with 10-minute walks then build up to 30 or 40 minutes.
  • Wear comfortable shoes and socks.
  • Breathe deeply as you walk.
  • If you feel short of breath or can't catch your breath, slow down.

Need To Know:

If you have high blood pressure, are seriously overweight, or have heart disease, talk to your diabetes treatment team before you start exercising. Be sure to take special care of your feet. Wear comfortable shoes that don't give you blisters, and check your feet for blisters, cuts or sores after every exercise session.

 

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Diabetes in Adults

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From Andrew Maynard - Chair of the University of Michigan Department of Environmental Health Sciences, with help from David Faulkner - 2013 Master of Public Health graduate.