diabetes – The ultimate guide on Type 2 diabetes
Have you been feeling tired lately? Like you have no energy to push forward. You are hungry all the time and you crave sweet or high carb foods. You are frequently going to the loo. And above all you are losing weight without even trying. If you have any or many of these symptoms, it is high time you get your blood sugar checked. There is an high probability of you being diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes.
In 2019, a total of 463 million people are estimated to be living with diabetes, representing 9.3% of the global adult population (20–79 years). This number is expected to increase to 578 million (10.2%) in 2030 and 700 million (10.9%) in 2045. (Source: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31518657)
Normal fasting blood sugar is 80 to 120 mg/100 ml and up to 180 mg/100 ml after one hour of eating. Type 2 diabetes is the most common type of diabetes and is characterized by high blood sugar level. This is a chronic condition and if left untreated can lead to severe circulatory, nervous and immune damages
Insulin is a hormone made by the pancreas that aids in letting blood sugar into the cells of your body to be used as energy. When you are diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, cells don’t respond normally to insulin; this is called insulin resistance. Hence your pancreas makes more insulin to try to get cells to respond. Eventually the pancreas can’t keep up, and the blood sugar rises, setting the stage for prediabetes and then type 2 diabetes. High blood sugar is damaging to the body and can cause other serious circulatory, nervous and immune disorders.
Even though the exact reason for type 2 diabetes is unknown; it is classified as a lifestyle disease. Major contributors are obesity, sedentary life, unhealthy diet, stress, high blood pressure, PCOS, etc. Genetics also play an important role in you being diagnosed with the condition. Type 2 diabetes often develops over several years and can go unnoticed for a long time. Because symptoms can be hard to spot, it’s important to know the risk factors and to get your blood sugar tested if you have any of them
- Increased thirst
- Frequent urination
- Increased hunger
- Unintended weight loss
- Blurred vision
- Slow-healing sores
- Frequent infections
- Numbness or tingling in the hands or feet
- Areas of darkened skin, usually in the armpits and neck
- Constant itching
Proper nutrition and active lifestyle are two paramount steps to be taken if you want to manage your diabetes. Always remember every journey is unique and there is no one panacea that suits everybody. Always consult your healthcare professional to understand your condition and plan your journey. This blog is a guide for you to make you aware of what steps should be taken next.
Fuel your body
Providing nutritious food to your body is the primary step in conquering this disease. Follow a diet rich in fiber, healthy fats, protein and complex slow digesting carbs. Avoid refined food and highly saturated fats. Instead of having 3 big meals; plan 4 to 6 small meals with regular intervals. Don’t skip your meals. Stay hydrated.
EFFEct of exercise
When you exercise; the blood glucose levels drop thereby boosting your body’s sensitivity to insulin, countering insulin resistance. In addition to this, When the muscles contract during activity, your cells will be able to take up glucose and use it for energy whether insulin is available or not.This is how exercise can help lower blood sugar in the short term and when you are active on a regular basis. Studies show that people with diabetes who walked at least two hours a week were less likely to have heart disease than their sedentary counter- parts, and those who exercised three to four hours a week cut their risk even more. Also, resistance training and aerobic exercise both help to lower insulin resistance in previously sedentary adults. Combining the two types of exercise will be more beneficial than doing either one alone.
Always remember, every journey is unique. It is always better to get a customized nutrition and activity plan to tackle your diabetes rather than going with a generic one. Take charge of your health now.