The American Diabetes Association (ADA) states that living with diabetes can be difficult but with the right care and treatment, it can be effectively managed. We know the risk of getting type 2 diabetes increases as we age, and current statistics show more than 25% of seniors in the United States age 60 and over have the disease. Also as we age, the risk of complications increases.
Along with your health care provider, organizations such as the ADA and the National Institute of Health offer tips and information for coping with the disease and ways to avoid or delay complications. Also even if you do not have the disease, it is still a good idea to education yourself to try and prevent the onset.
The ADA recommends the following suggestions for living as healthy as possible with type 2 diabetes. Their first recommendation is to keep your blood glucose levels under control. Know your target range and check your levels daily or as recommended by your doctor. In addition make the appropriate changes to your diet to not only lower your blood glucose, but to lower your risk for heart disease.
Another important part of living with diabetes is to work to keep your blood pressure and cholesterol levels in the normal ranges. Many of the same lifestyle changes we do to control blood glucose can help control blood pressure. The ADA advises that “people with diabetes keep their blood pressure below 140/80, but check with your health care professional about what target is best for you.” Along with medications, you can lower your cholesterol by eating a healthy diet, losing weight and exercising.
You can also manage your diabetes better if you stop smoking. We recognize that smoking is bad for everyone but it is far worse for those with diabetes. Finally if you increase your physical activity, you will gain more strength and energy and be better able to manage your blood glucose as well as help to lower your blood pressure.
This post is for information purposes only; please consult your health care providers with any health concerns.
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