Over 34 million people in the United States have diabetes. Managing diabetes can be tricky depending on the type you have, but it’s not impossible. Though there’s no cure, there are still many ways to treat and relieve your diabetes symptoms. If you’re living with diabetes, keep reading to learn more about diabetes relief.
What Is Diabetes?
Normally, the sugar in your bloodstream is maintained and regulated by insulin, which is made by your pancreas. Diabetes is a disease where your pancreas produces little to no insulin, resulting in high blood sugar. When your blood sugar is continuously too high, this could lead to other serious illnesses like heart disease and kidney problems.
Diabetes is also hereditary. If someone in your immediate family has diabetes, you’re at risk for developing it as well.
Some symptoms of diabetes are:
- Excessive thirst and hunger
- Vision problems
- Weight loss
- Dry skin
- Numbness in hands and feet
If you think you’re experiencing symptoms of diabetes, or you have diabetes and are suffering from these symptoms, see your doctor.
Types of Diabetes
There are three types of diabetes: type 1, type 2, and gestational diabetes, which occurs only in pregnancy.
Type 1 diabetes inhibits your body from creating insulin. It’s very common in young children and teenagers. To manage type 1 diabetes, you’ll have to take insulin every day because your body isn’t able to produce it on its own.
Type 2 diabetes is more common, affecting both adults and children. Your body does make insulin but doesn’t effectively use it. Sometimes there are little to no symptoms that are present in type 2 diabetes, so if you believe you’re at-risk, be sure to get tested.
Gestational diabetes happens only in pregnancy, to women who do not already have diabetes. Pregnant women take a glucose test in the second trimester of pregnancy to determine if they’ve developed gestational diabetes. If so, you and your baby are both at risk for other health problems.
While a diabetes diagnosis is unwelcome, there are ways in which you can find relief.
Here are some ways you can combat and conquer diabetes in your life.
1. Healthy Eating
Eating a healthy diet is one of the best ways to help control your diabetes. Avoiding or limiting the amount of processed food you eat is recommended because they have a high glycemic index; This will make your blood sugar skyrocket.
Fill your diet with plenty of fruits, vegetables, and lean meats. Try to limit your alcohol intake as well, because alcohol can lower your blood sugar levels. Get the ‘ok’ from your doctor if you want to drink alcohol.
Regular exercise is another way you can manage your diabetes. Exercising is good for everyone, but especially for those with diabetes, because it lowers your blood sugar by helping your body process insulin more effectively.
While intense exercise is best, any activity is good. It can be as simple as a daily walk, run, or any activity that gets your body moving. Yoga is also an option because it reduces stress, which can increase your blood sugar levels.
Your muscles use sugar for energy, so be sure to stay hydrated and check your blood sugar during, and after, your workout.
While diet and exercise are key factors in managing all types of diabetes, many people do need medications as well.
Insulin lowers your blood sugar, but other medications may be necessary depending on the severity of your diabetes.
If you’re already on medication for other health conditions, discussing them with your doctor will help avoid any drug interactions and complications.
4. Lose Weight
Extra weight can cause numerous health issues, but for diabetics, it’s even more important to maintain a healthy weight.
Fat stored in the body tends to cause your body to resist insulin.
You don’t have to lose a lot of weight to begin noticing positive effects unless recommended by your doctor. Losing a few extra pounds if you’re slightly overweight is a big step.
5. Get Sleep
Sleep apnea is a condition in which the individual stops breathing while they’re sleeping.
To prevent this, use a machine called a CPAP that helps regulate breathing. It’s not uncommon for people with type 2 diabetes to also have sleep apnea.
If you have diabetes and think you may have sleep apnea, or you have trouble getting good sleep, talk to your doctor.
Stress can contribute to rising blood sugar due to stress hormones that are released. One way to fight stress is to practice a form of meditation.
Meditation is a way to relax and reduce stress and can help prevent a blood-sugar spike. Incorporate things like yoga, tai-chi, or breathing exercises into your daily routine to keep stress under control.
If you’re already exercising, this is another great addition to your routine that can help keep your stress levels down.
7. Watch Your Immune System
Everyone gets sick now and then, but diabetics have to be a little more cautious.
When you’re sick, not only does your body produce antibodies to fight the illness, but it also releases stress hormones.
Again, stress hormones can negatively impact your blood sugar, so you’ll need to be aware of your blood sugar levels when you’re sick.
Maintaining healthy lifestyle habits that we’ve mentioned above can help ensure that your immune system stays strong.
You Can Find Diabetes Symptoms Relief
Getting diabetes relief is important not in managing the disease, but also to live a full quality of life. Once you learn how to handle your diabetes by eating well, exercising, paying attention to your body, managing your stress levels, and staying on top of your medications, you can feel confident in your health.
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