Like millions of people in America, anyone could be managing diabetes right now. Whether one has had type 1 or type 2 diabetes for years or are just finding out about it now, managing the blood sugar level can seem like a tricky thing, especially if one doesn’t know what makes their blood sugar levels rise and fall. The more one can manage these things, the better control they’ll have over their diabetes, and the more likely it can be kept in check.
One can prevent some of the complications of diabetes by making healthy food choices and managing their blood sugar levels. Eating a consistent number of carbohydrates at every meal is the key to successful blood sugar control. Count the amount of carbohydrates with each meal and snack.
Coordinating meals and medications can help one make healthy food choices. Eating well-balanced meals helps keep blood sugar levels even over the course of the day.
For many people with diabetes, physical activity is another vital part of the treatment plan. Exercise can help reduce the risk for heart disease and stroke, lower blood pressure and cholesterol, and improve the body’s capability to use insulin.
A physical activity goal that works for most people is to do at least 150 minutes of physical activity each week. Speak to the doctor about what type of exercise is most appropriate.
Eat a snack before exercising if the blood sugar is lower than usual or if one has taken insulin or diabetes medications that raise the blood sugar. Check the blood sugar level about an hour after exercise. Before beginning exercise, make sure to check the blood sugar level unless it is against the doctor’s advice to do so.
Managing diabetes requires a balance between diet and exercise and diabetes medication. The timing and dosage of any injected medication one takes for conditions other than diabetes also can affect the blood sugar levels.
Be sure to contact the healthcare team about the medications taken for other conditions, such as high blood pressure or high cholesterol. This is important because some medicines can raise the blood sugar levels while others can reduce them, and one may want to avoid taking them simultaneously or in too large a dose.
Once one knows which medications are appropriate, they can ensure they are taken correctly, at the right time during the day, and with the right quantity of food.