Once you have been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes you need to learn how to manage the disease. You can live a normal, long and healthy life with type 2 diabetes, if you live a healthy lifestyle. High glucose levels causes damage to nerves, kidneys, blood vessels, and eyes. Once diabetes has been diagnosed, then you need to monitor your health closely.
1Test your blood glucose (blood sugar) as directed by your physician.
2Follow the food plan as outlined by your physician or dietitian.
- Acquire the habit of eating slowly to prevent overeating without feeling hungry or deprived to avoid gaining weight. You will feel satisfied with less food; Google “eating slowly” to learn more about it (How and why it works).
- If you follow a low glycemic diet, you should focus on foods that are below 55.
- Regulate your carbohydrates throughout the day, eating about the same amount at each meal. Your dietitian or doctor should give you the amount of carbohydrates you should eat each day. Many diabetic diets have you eat three meals and three small snacks throughout the day.
3Walk at least 20 to 30 minutes most days of the week. Other types of exercise that can help regulate glucose are biking and swimming. You may wish to break your walk into two or three sessions a day, 10 to 15 minuets each.
4Take your medication as prescribed. Do not skip doses.
5Inspect your feet every day to check for bruising, sores, or blisters. Diabetes damages the nerves, with the damage often beginning with the feet decreasing circulation and sensation.
6See your diabetes team once or more a year:
- Primary care (or an endocrinologist): twice a year.
- Podiatrist: once a year for a thorough foot exam.
- Ophthalmologist: once a year for a thorough eye exam.
(Psychologist: if you often eat unhealthily.)
7Ask your doctor about lowering your blood sugar and the need for insulin or snacks for your sleep (night or day): not eating other than light protein snack near bedtime, especially stopping non-essential nutrients 2 or 3 hours before your sleep-time, drinking only water (not alcohol, no caffeine or other stimulants) at such times, telling yourself: “That food will be here tomorrow!”
- Realize, those late-night snacks should be a no-no for people who have diabetes, per Mayo Clinic article.
- Hungry after dinner — these “free” foods have few, if any, carbohydrates and calories, so “one” of them won’t cause weight gain or increased blood sugar.Choose a “free” food, such as:
- A can of diet soda,
- A serving of sugar-free gelatin,
- Five baby carrots,
- Two saltine crackers,
- One vanilla wafer,
- Four almonds (or similar nuts),
- One piece of gum or small hard candy…
- Give your nerves, liver and the digestive system time to finish work, and to rest and for general recovery, from the sugar produced by [continuing] digestion when asleep;
Stop blood sugar being unnecessarily elevated during sleep.
Stop fats or sugars being processed all night in the liver (and allow in-digestion to clear, as well).
8Sleep (on an almost empty stomach!) — get 6, preferably 7 or more hours of sleep for recovery time for the nerves and all other systems to settle and rest. This will lower your diabetes problems, i.e.: blood sugar levels [and improve your blood pressure].
- If you need help sleeping, (1) try the one antihistamine to cause drowsiness that does not cause higher blood pressure (HBP), as cheap as $4 for 100 (as Equate brand ‘Chlortabs’): it is chlorpheniramine maleate — also sold as ‘Chlortrimeton’ and as ‘Corcidin-HBP’. (Do not use any sugary antihistamine syrups.) (2) Taking Valerian as a highly relaxant herb — helps with sleep and is especially known to reduce body aches and pains. If you wake up too early, drink water and take another dose of both, if four hours or more have passed since the first dose. (3) Take calcium with magnesium and vitamin D3 and B-vitamins, omega3, omega3-6-9 which all work together, causing much improved relaxation and many other healthful benefits! (4) A “small serving of protein food” helps sleep — such as plain turkey or chicken, and do eat almonds (have more fiber!), walnuts, pecans, sunflower and pumpkin seeds, pistachios, red peanuts with skins-on (also, those kinds of seeds and all nuts have essential oils!).