A type 2 diabetes diagnosis is life changing. It cannot only be a wake-up call for your poor lifestyle choices over the years, but you will need to embrace healthier behaviors to protect your health and manage the chronic condition.
While it is natural to feel upset or overwhelmed after receiving the news, you will be pleased to learn that it is possible to live a healthy, happy life with diabetes. Plus, you may be able to reverse the condition. Here are four steps to take after a type 2 diabetes diagnosis.
Step 1: Understand the Condition
It is important to learn as much as possible about type 2 diabetes following a diagnosis. Your doctor can provide information regarding the condition, but some research could improve your understanding of making smarter health decisions. For example, learn how the condition develops, the key steps to take to reverse or manage the condition, avoid a hypoglycemic event, and identify hypo signs.
Step 2: Change Your Diet
Following a diagnosis, a doctor may advise you to change your diet to manage your blood sugar (glucose) levels. According to the CDC, 9 out of 10 people living with type 2 diabetes are medically classified as overweight. Losing between 5 to 10lbs of your body weight could reduce your blood sugar levels, which can decrease your need for medication.
While there isn’t a one-size-fits-all diet for diabetes, there are healthy changes you can make to lose weight, such as:
- Consuming more fiber-rich foods, such as non-starchy vegetables, fruits, and whole grains
- Reducing your portion sizes
- Eating a moderate amount of dairy, fish, and lean meat
- Decrease fat, sugar, and salt intake
- Cooking with healthier oils, such as olive oil or canola oil
Step 3: Find the Right Glucose Monitoring System
It is crucial to measure your blood sugar levels throughout the day to avoid a hypoglycaemic event. A smart glucose monitoring system can make managing diabetes a breeze. The pocket-sized device provides highly accurate measurements within six seconds and requires only a small drop of blood. Also, the handy app allows you to monitor your levels, count your carbs, monitor your medication, and exercise, and send an emergency hypo alert to your friends or family.
Step 4: Start Exercising
In addition to developing a healthier diet plan and finding the right glucose monitoring system, you must incorporate more physical activity into your daily routine. Exercise will help you lose weight and manage your blood sugar levels. Plus, it can prevent type 2 diabetes complications, such as cardiovascular disease.
The ADA recommends people living with type 2 diabetes experience a minimum of 150 minutes of moderate to vigorous aerobic exercise each week, which they can spread out across the week. Also, you must limit sedentary behaviors each day and ensure you don’t experience more than two days of zero physical activity.
If you notice any changes to your blood sugar levels or develop new symptoms, book an appointment with your doctor as soon as possible. They might need to review and adjust your treatment plan to help you manage the condition.