Diabetes is a chronic disease that affects the body’s production or utilization of insulin, which is a hormone that allows glucose to enter the body’s cells for energy. The two main types of diabetes are type 1 diabetes and type 2 diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is usually diagnosed in childhood, and it is the type that is completely not within one’s control, while type 2 diabetes typically develops in adulthood, and is also called “a lifestyle disease” as it can be prevented and, in some cases, reversed.
If you are at all concerned about your type 2 diabetes risk, perhaps because diabetes runs in your family, you are right to feel that way. Diabetes is one of the medical conditions that affect the entire body and increases your risk for many other chronic medical conditions.
Here, we will give 5 helpful things you can do to prevent diabetes. For more individualized recommendations, your best resource is your primary care doctor.
1. Get Active and Stay Active
Regular physical activity not only helps control the blood glucose levels of those with diabetes but also those who would like to prevent it. Studies show that being physically active helps your body become more sensitive to insulin. Another reason why physical activity helps prevent diabetes is that it helps keep your weight down. Obesity is a major risk factor for developing diabetes, so by keeping your weight down through physical activity, you can help reduce your risk of developing the disease.
2. Eat a Healthy Diet
A healthy diet of vegetables, fruits, and whole grains, and low in saturated and trans fats helps prevent diabetes by keeping blood sugar levels in the body stable. When blood sugar levels are stable, the pancreas does not have to work as hard to produce insulin. A diet that includes plenty of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains helps keep blood sugar levels stable throughout the day while providing much-needed nutrients to the body.
3. Maintain a Healthy Weight
Excess weight or obesity increases your risk of developing type 2 diabetes. The scientific explanation for this is that when a person is overweight, they have more fat cells. These fat cells produce chemicals that can lead to inflammation and insulin resistance. Insulin resistance is when the body does not respond properly to insulin, which can eventually lead to diabetes. Losing even a small amount of weight, such as 5 to 10 percent of your total body weight, can lower your risk for the disease.
4. Get Regular Screenings
Diabetes often has no symptoms in its early stages, so it’s important to get screened regularly by your doctor, especially if you are at high risk for the disease. Early diagnosis and treatment are essential for managing the condition effectively before it leads to serious complications such as heart disease or stroke.
5. Manage Your Stress Levels
Chronic stress can lead to high levels of the hormone cortisol in the body, and cortisol tells the body to store fat, particularly in the abdomen, which is a huge risk factor for type 2 diabetes. The increased abdominal fat makes it more difficult for insulin to do its job of transporting sugar from the bloodstream into cells, resulting in type 2 diabetes, so it’s important to find ways to manage stress effectively.
Diabetes Management and Treatment in Rochester, NY
At Cornerstone Urgent Care Center, we not only provide urgent medical services but also diabetic screening and chronic disease management services. Our urgent care providers see patients who have been diagnosed as pre-diabetic (and have successfully helped many of them manage their glucose levels and prevent or delay the onset of type 2 diabetes), as well as those who have been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. Managing diabetes is now easier than ever with the right support and education.
Chronic disease management for diabetes includes regular check-ups with a healthcare provider, monitoring of blood sugar levels, and following a healthy lifestyle. People with diabetes should eat a balanced diet, exercise regularly, and monitor their blood sugar levels, all of which we will help you with. To become more proactive with your health, schedule an appointment with us today. Call (585) 207-0088 or send us a message using our secure online form.