Diabetes is a common disease. It is characterized by a deficiency of insulin, leading to an elevation of blood glucose level. The elevated high blood glucose for prolonged time is responsible for all the deadly complications of diabetes. Thus the main aim of the treatment of diabetes is to maintain blood glucose as close to normal as possible.
This goal is currently achieved mainly by the use of insulin in case of type 1 diabetes and a combination of insulin and diabetes medication in case of type 2 diabetes. There are certain additional non-pharmacological measures that are can significantly improve the blood glucose level. The summary of these conditions is as follow.
The diabetics are always advised to do regular exercise. The type, duration and intensity of the exercise vary individually. In general an aerobic exercise of mild to moderate intensity for at least 10-30 minutes a day 3 to 5 days a week is good enough for you. The examples of aerobic activities such as brisk walking, jogging, running and cycling.
If you can’t do that, try to integrate physical activity in your daily life. For instance stop using the elevator and take stairs. Try to park the car away from the door so that you have to walk a little before you can enter your home or office. Don’t watch too much TV and avoid sitting in front of your computer all the time.
The importance of regular exercise to improve the control of blood glucose level is well documented in scientific research. According to a report published in a journal called Diabetes Research and Clinical Practice a report it was noted that regular exercise can prevent the progression of impaired glucose tolerance, a pre-diabetic state to type 2 diabetes. In a similar report published in British journal of sports medicine regular exercise was found to achieve an optimum blood glucose level by increasing insulin sensitivity.
Eating Healthy Foods
The foods contain refined carbohydrates. They can be readily absorbed and can produce a spike in the blood glucose level. They include food products such as white bread, white rice, biscuits, cakes, candy, pastries and beer. This is why it is always important to avoid any of these foods in patients with diabetes.
The recommended foods patients with diabetes are the foods rich in complex carbohydrates. They are absorbed slowly and they produce a gradual rise in the blood glucose level. The example of foods rich in complex carbohydrates are wholegrain bread, cereals, beans, barley, wheat, and vegetables.
Try to include fiber rich foods in your diet. The recommendation for daily intake of fiber is between 20 and 45 mg. The fruits rich in fiber include banana, apple with skin, orange, strawberries, and raspberries. The vegetables with abundant fiber content are green peas, Broccoli, and potatoes with skin) cereals, and legumes.
The American journal of clinical nutrition has linked the increase in the intake of the refined carbohydrates and a decrease in the fiber intake to the increase in the prevalence of type 2 diabetes during the 20th century. Thus the take home message here is to avoid refined carbohydrates and take fiber rich foods.
Proteins should be taken in adequate amount. Fish has much less quantity of cholesterol and fats as compared to poultry and meat and it is rich in omega.3 fatty acid. These factors make fish one of the best sources of proteins.
4. Fluid Intake
Fruit juices and Soda are rich in sugar and therefore can cause a spike in your blood glucose level. This is why diabetics should avoid the consumption of any of these sugar containing products. The best approach for the diabetics as well as for normal population is to drink at least 8-10 glasses of clean water daily.
These measures can help you achieve an adequate control on the blood sugar to a certain extent. However you are not supposed to self mange your diabetes with the above mentioned dietary measure and exercise alone. This is because most of the times these measure alone are not enough and they require medications. Thus you should strictly follow the treatment plan provided to you by your doctor.