How Can You Prevent Diabetes?
It is a well known fact that prevention is better than cure. Rather than curing diseases after we get them it is better to prevent the diseases altogether.
Diabetes is a chronic disease and is rapidly affecting millions of people all over the world. Cases of this disease that are not controlled can result in blindness, heart disease, kidney failure, and other serious health conditions.
Have you heard of prediabetes? It is a period before diabetes is diagnosed where blood sugar levels in the body are high but not high enough to be called diabetes. This diabetes is called prediabetes.
It is estimated that almost 70% of the people with prediabetes end up developing type 2 diabetes. However, there is a chance of progressing from prediabetes to diabetes.
Some factors like genes, age or past behaviors cannot be altered but there are many actions that can reduce the risk of diabetes. Here’s how you can prevent diabetes!
1) Cut down on sugar and remove refined carbs from your diet
Eating sugar loaded foods and refined carbs increase blood sugar and insulin levels in the body. This can put at-risk persons on the path that leads to developing diabetes. The link between risk of diabetes and frequent carb or sugar consumption has been observed by studies. However, replacing such with foods with those that have a lesser effect on blood sugar can reduce the risk.
2) Exercise regularly
You can prevent diabetes by doing physical activity regularly. Exercising decreases the insulin needed to keep your blood sugar levels in control.
It has been found that exercises such as high-intensity interval training (HIIT), strength training and aerobic exercise can reduce insulin resistance and blood sugar in adults who are overweight, obese or prediabetic.
Thus, choosing to carry out a physical activity that you enjoy can do wonders to your health.
3) Drink water
Go in for water instead of beverages that contain high amounts of sugar, preservatives and other artificial ingredients. This will help in keeping blood sugar and insulin levels in control thereby reducing the chances of diabetes.
4) Lose weight if you are overweight
Carrying excess weight around, particularly in the abdominal part increases the chances of developing diabetes. So, you can bring down the risk a lot by losing all the unwanted weight.
5) Quit smoking
Generally speaking, if you smoke, quit right away as it is the root cause of many health conditions like heart disease and cancer. Passive smoking is also detrimental to health. Smoking tobacco has a strong association with diabetes. Quitting helps reduce the risk with time.
6) Stick to a very low carb diet
Follow a ketogenic or a diet very low in carbs as it can help in keeping the blood sugar and insulin levels in control. This may protect against diabetes.
7) Keep a watch on portion sizes
To keep diabetes at bay, you need to keep a close watch on your food portions. Avoid large food portions to reduce the risk of diabetes especially if you are on the heavier side. Doing so can reduce insulin and blood sugar levels and reduce the risk of diabetes.
8) Give up sedentary lifestyle
It is essential to give up a sedentary lifestyle if you want to be healthy. A sedentary lifestyle is one in which you sit during most of time during the day. A link between sedentary behaviour and diabetes risk has been established.
Get physically active and reduce the risk of diabetes. You can do so by taking the stairs instead of the lift and walking around while talking on the phone (not on the road!).
9) Consume a high-fibre diet
A high fibre diet is essential for weight management as well as gut health. Studies say that such a diet will help in keeping blood sugar and insulin levels low, thereby reducing the risk of developing diabetes.
10) Get enough vitamin D
Vitamin D is needed for blood sugar control. So, you must get vitamin D from the sun or supplements to reduce the risk of diabetes.
11) Reduce processed foods
By minimizing your consumption of processed foods and focusing on whole foods, you will reduce the risk of diabetes. Otherwise too whole foods are a lot healthier!
12) Drink tea or coffee
According to research, drinking tea or coffee in your diet will ward off diabetes. This is due to the antioxidants called polyphenols in the beverages.