10 Ways to Manage Your Diabetes

Diabetes is a very common lifestyle disease. The effective way to manage the condition is correct nutrition along with walking and any form of exercise.

Create a healthy eating plan
Base your diet on low-GI; high-fibre breads and cereals; lean protein foods such as lean meat, tofu and legumes; low-fat dairy; two serves of fruit and five serves of vegies; and healthy fats such as vegetable oils, nuts, seeds and avocado.

Go for slow-release carbs
Eat regular meals and maintain an even spread of carbohydrate intake throughout the day to prevent spikes in your blood glucose levels. Look for the new GI symbol, which can be found on everyday foods such as bread, cereal, fruit, pasta and rice.

Shop smarter
Before heading to the supermarket, write a list. Don't shop when you're hungry and stick to the perimeter of the supermarket as this is where all the fresh food is. Shop early in the week or late at night, as these times are quieter and you can take your time and really think about what you're putting in your trolley.

Snack sensibly
Keep your snacks to 500 kilojoules or less. Good choices include fruit, reduced-fat yoghurt, nuts and fruit or wholegrain toast. Make a list of healthy snacks and pop it on the fridge so you won't be tempted to make poor choices when you're in a hurry.

Choose wisely when eating out
Having diabetes doesn't mean you can never eat out again, you just need to make healthy choices. Love fish and chips? Order grilled fish with a small serve of fries. A big fan of Italian food? Order entrée-sized serves and avoid creamy sauces. Share dessert with a friend or order a skim coffee.

Know your alcohol units
The current daily recommendations for people with diabetes are one standard drink for women and two standard drinks for men. You should also plan to have at least two alcohol-free days a week.

Get active
Add short periods of movement to your day by getting off public transport a stop early, walking around the house during ad breaks and standing up when talking on the phone. Aim to also do at least 30 minutes of aerobic exercise five times a week, such as walking, swimming, cycling, dancing or jogging. Visit your local government website for information on fitness groups and sports facilities.

Have your eyes tested
Diabetes is the leading cause of preventable blindness, but regular check-ups can help you to retain good eyesight. Get your eyes examined at least once a year by an optometrist or ophthalmologist and never ignore any sudden changes in your vision.

Get plenty of sleep
Inadequate sleep can lead to weight gain and makes it harder to control blood pressure, cholesterol and glucose levels. Establish a regular sleep pattern of going to bed and waking at the same time every day, even on weekends. Avoid caffeine after 2pm and keep the TV and computer out of the bedroom. See your GP or a sleep specialist if you think you may be suffering from insomnia.

Keep your mind sharp
People with diabetes have an increased risk of developing dementia, so it's important to keep mentally active. Join a club or society and stay socially as well as mentally active. Find something challenging that you can enjoy every day, such as playing chess or doing crosswords or Sudoku puzzles.

Nutrition: Foods low in glycemic index are very good for managing high blood sugar.

High fiber foods: When we refine grains, they lose their fiber, minerals and vitamins and become harmful for diabetics. Such refined foods can suddenly raise blood sugar. Therefore, eating foods that are not refined is the number one need for diabetics. Examples of such foods are whole grains, brown rice, unpolished rice, and oats with natural fiber.

Barley: Consumed along with black chickpeas, it is an excellent food for controlling blood sugar.

Foods naturally low in glycemic index: These include all dals, all pulses and legumes. However, the legumes should be consumed with chilka (organic dry split beans) or whole and not refined to a powder form. Sprouts are a wonderful way to control blood sugar.

Fruits: Fruits that can be safely eaten by diabetics are papaya, guava, berries, cherries, pomegranate, pear, and pineapple. However, they should be eaten whole and not taken in the form of juice

Herbs and spices for diabetics
Cinnamon: is an excellent spice for diabetics; it can be taken as an extract by boiling a small powdered portion in water and drinking this on an empty stomach.
Ginger: Another excellent digestive and an anti-diabetic.
Turmeric: has been used in Traditional Chinese and Ayurvedic herbal medicine for thousands of years as a detoxification herb (as it appears to protect the liver) and as a potent anti-inflammatory. Turmeric improves the action of disrupted insulin-response pathways in diabetes.
Hot peppers such as habaneros, serranos, jalapenos and cayennes are primarily known for their culinary uses; however, they may also help manage the symptoms of diabetes. These peppers contain a chemical compound called capsaicin, which may lower blood sugar levels, helping to prevent dizziness and fatigue. Capsaicin may also lower "bad" cholesterol that can contribute to diabetes-related heart disease.
Bitter Melon: Upcoming could be identify of bitter melon that is an Asian vegetable and extensively utilized as herb for reducing the stage of blood glucose. Bitter melons also possess some antiviral along with antibacterial properties. It has the potential of treating HIV, AIDS and Hepatitis C.
Ming Mu Di Huang: It is just a Chinese herbal system which is used for treating the vision problems experienced by diabetics.

Finally, eating small but frequent meals helps to regulate blood sugar effectively. Along with good nutrition, regular walking or exercise is also very essential as it helps the insulin to balance and also aids in improving insulin sensitivity.

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