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How To Live To The Fullest With Diabetes

Health

How To Live To The Fullest With Diabetes

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diabetes cartoonIts been a few months since I wrote a post on the diabetes alert. I shared my knowledge regarding the less known pre diabetic condition that most Americans and the world wide population have been unaware of.

This post is especially dedicated to those who have unfortunately become a victim of the disease and are living with it. Health experts acknowledge the dark side of diabetes, like if not taken care of, can significantly increase your chances of heart disease.[1]

This brings up the matter of how to deal with it. Well, it is not a huge deal if you know to take care of few things in your lifestyle. I am saying that from my personal experience as both my parents are diabetic, and they have been doing pretty well for themselves in the past 10-12 years.

My mother got diagnosed as a pre diabetic, a condition where your blood glucose is high, but not high enough to cause full blown diabetes. With a little change in her lifestyle, she got herself rid of medications.

Diabetes Is Not The World’s End

It is a myth that most people like to believe that if you have diabetes, you are at the world’s end. There is absolutely no need to give up on your health or stop going to the gym. You can resume all those things if you are keeping a check on your diet and not going too extreme during your workouts.

As Jim Rohn says, “Take care of your body. Its the only place you have to live.”

So what if you have the disease? You can still pursue your hobbies, travel around the world and make every moment of your life count.

How Do We Begin?

danceStaying active is in fact, a key part of diabetes management. It not only helps to lower your blood sugar, but also keeps your heart healthy by lowering your cholesterol levels thus automatically reducing your chances of falling prey to heart disease. It makes the body expend more energy thus increasing your sensitivity to insulin.[2][3]

Its never too late to begin with diabetes. For beginners, the most easy way to begin is to try your hand at something you love. Yes, you don’t need to restrict yourself to the four walls of the gym. My mom is not a yoga fan, neither does she goes to the gym. So, guess what she took up? Dance classes!

She has been going to classical dance classes thrice a week and the remaining days she goes jogging in the evenings as soon as she is done with her daily chores. That is how she keeps herself active till today even though she is no longer a pre diabetic.

My father on the other hand has developed this liking for yoga in the past few years. And he is so much into it now, that he has managed to organize a yoga cluster with the neighbors whom he teaches yoga in the community park every alternate morning.

So, I believe you got the idea.

The trick is to try anything or everything that you love. It you are a cardio fan, go running or cycling. Go skiing in the winters or sweat out in the beach in summers with the volleyball. Swim in the waters or dance to your favorite tunes. There is absolutely no dearth of options if you really wish to stay healthy and active. It is all possible.

A Little Hindrance That Needs A Check

cyclingFrom what I have witnessed, my parents have been physically active throughout the years and managed to lower their sugar levels and improve their health. The only problem that they face is that their sugar levels keep fluctuating most of the time. Doctors say its part and parcel of being a diabetic.

But you can take care of that too. Check your glucose levels before and after you go running or cycling. Make it a habit, as this way you’ll get an idea how much physical activity is ideal for you so as not to drop your sugar levels too low.

Whenever you get breathless or your sugar drops low, just take a short break, eat some carbs, drink your fluids and get going. That shouldn’t be an excuse to cut short on your workout. Keep yourself focused and always remember you can do this.

Any Activity Safe Or Unsafe?

It is really a sad thought for those who think diabetes makes your life less adventurous. Certainly, every time you are on the go, there are chances of dropping low or getting stressed easily. But that didn’t stop my parents from pursuing what they love. And why should you?

However, if you are not used to regular exercise, remind yourself to start slow and low. Begin with 10 minutes of brisk walking daily and slowly increase the duration according to your comfort.

If you are a couch potato, get off and engage yourself in activities that need you to move around. Cardiac workouts can be really helpful if you go to the gym.

Having said all that, consult your doctor and get yourself checked before you begin your workout routine to be on the safer side to avoid any complications. You don’t really need to go breathless to reap the benefits of exercise. But if you are into sports or athletics, keep your doctor informed about any activity that demands you to go extreme.

Diabetes can make your dreams and goals a little difficult to achieve, but certainly not impossible. Improve your quality of life with diabetes. My parents did, you can do it too. Take care!

Reference

[1]Haffner, S., D'Agostino, R., Mykkanen, L., Tracy, R., Howard, B., Rewers, M., Selby, J., Savage, P., & Saad, M. (1999). Insulin sensitivity in subjects with type 2 diabetes. Relationship to cardiovascular risk factors: the Insulin Resistance Atherosclerosis Study Diabetes Care, 22 (4), 562-568 DOI: 10.2337/diacare.22.4.562. ^Back to Top^

[2]WC Knowler (2002). Reduction in the Incidence of Type 2 Diabetes with Lifestyle Intervention or Metformin New England Journal of Medicine, 346 (6), 393-403 DOI: 10.1056/NEJMoa012512. ^Back to Top^

[3]Helmrich SP, Ragland DR, Leung RW, & Paffenbarger RS Jr (1991). Physical activity and reduced occurrence of non-insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus. The New England journal of medicine, 325 (3), 147-52 PMID: 2052059. ^Back to Top^

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