Learning to Manage Diabetes
Diabetes is a chronic health condition, meaning that it is something that many people will struggle with over the course of several years—potentially even for the majority of their lives. Your functional medicine doctor can help you develop a plan for managing and overcoming your diabetes.
Diabetes is caused by a combination of factors that range from external and dietary to genetic. Once you are diagnosed with diabetes, you have to change many aspects of your daily lifestyle and dietary choices. The amount of sugar and fat that you eat daily, the level of exercise you engage in, even how much sleep you get every night matters greatly when you are trying to manage your diabetes.
The lesson that you can’t learn early enough is this: It isn’t just about diet choices with diabetes. To manage your disease effectively you need to focus on a combination of external and dietary factors.
Why Managing Diabetes Matters
Letting your diabetes control your life only puts you at a heightened risk for hospitalization and severe health concerns. When your diabetes runs you, even the most basic activities can become burdensome as you constantly have to put your likes and wishes aside so that you can cope with your health. Even if you think you are in control, chances are that you aren’t.
Managing diabetes helps you to:
- Have heightened energy levels
- Reduced fatigue
- Overcome chronic thirst
- Fewer skin and bladder infections
- Have wounds heal properly
- Urinate less often
- Generally improved immune system
How to Manage Diabetes
When you first find out you have diabetes, the steps to manage it might seem overwhelming. But over time you will realize that these healthy habits can actually fit together quite easily in helping you develop an overall healthier lifestyle.
To manage your diabetes you’ll have to adjust your diet. The best way to do this is by creating a diabetic meal plan that puts everything you need to feel full and satisfied right at your fingertips. You’ll want to focus on foods that are low in calories, fat, sugar, and salt, but remain high in other nutrients—especially fiber. Great choices here include whole grain breads or pasta, as well as fruits, vegetables and low-fat cheese and milk. Instead of going for soda or juice, which have way too high of a sugar content, opt for water.
While making these dietary changes you’ll also want to assess external factors that could be compromising your health. Too much stress can raise your blood sugar levels, so when you are focusing on your physical health you want to find ways to manage your mental health too by exercising, meditating, or talking with a mental health professional. Regular exercise is important in managing your weight and can help you overcome diabetes.
With a little effort, diabetes can be controlled and its symptoms managed. Work closely with your functional medicine doctor for assistance with the management of diabetes.