Diabetes is a chronic health condition that occurs when the pancreas produces little to no insulin or when the body can’t effectively use the insulin it produces. As a result, glucose accumulates in the bloodstream, increasing the risk of serious complications such as kidney failure, vision loss, heart attack, and lower limb amputation. There is no known way to prevent type 1 diabetes, and it is not possible to avoid gestational diabetes entirely. But the good news is that making a few changes in your lifestyle can help you prevent the onset of prediabetes and type 2 diabetes New York. Below are some of the tips to consider.
Stay physically active
There are several benefits to losing weight; exercise can help you lose weight, lower blood sugar, and increase the insulin sensitivity of your cells. One of the causes of type 2 diabetes is insulin resistance, whereby the cells are unresponsive to insulin action; therefore, they can’t absorb sugar from the blood. The pancreas counteracts this by producing more insulin until it cannot produce more. The cells become more sensitive to insulin with exercise, meaning you need less insulin to regulate blood sugar.
Aim for at least half an hour of moderate to vigorous activity every day, such as swimming, walking, biking, or running. Engage in resistance exercises such as weightlifting and yoga at least two to three times a week and avoid prolonged inactivity like sitting at the computer.
Lose extra weight
Excess weight, especially in your midsection and abdominal organs, is associated with prediabetes and type 2 diabetes. The good news is that losing even a small amount of weight can reduce your risk of type 2 diabetes if you have prediabetes. If you need to lose weight, one of the great places to start is having a balanced plate with lean proteins, non-starchy vegetables, complex carbs, and healthy fats. Your weight loss goal depends on your current body weight – have attainable short-term gains such as losing one or two pounds weekly.
Follow a high-fiber diet
Foods rich in fiber help keep blood sugar and insulin levels low; they are also beneficial for gut health and weight management. Ensure you eat a source of fiber at every meal to prevent spikes in blood sugar and insulin levels. Fiber-rich foods include legumes, whole grains, fruits, and non-starchy vegetables.
Limit your portion sizes
Eating the right portion of food is essential to preventing type 2 diabetes. Eating large portions of food in one sitting causes higher blood sugar in people at risk of diabetes. Conversely, eating smaller amounts limits calorie intake and may also result in weight loss, reducing your risk of diabetes. A specialist can help formulate a meal plan with the appropriate portion of healthy foods to reduce body fat and your risk for diabetes. You can manage your portion sizes by making your plate half non-starchy vegetables, a quarter lean proteins, and quarter whole grains or fruits. Consider asking for a half portion or choosing an appetizer for your main course if you are at an eatery that serves large amounts.
If you are at risk of type 2 diabetes, consult your physician at Daniel P. Klein, MD, FACP, to know how you can reduce your risk of diabetes.