Diabetes management may be a 24/7 job for individuals living with type 1 diabetes or type 2 diabetes

Many people who want to lose weight allow themselves so-called cheat days during which they can stray from their strict diet or exercise regimen. However, this strategy may not apply to individuals who have type 1 diabetes or type 2 diabetes.

While physicians often recommend lifestyle changes to help diabetics manage their blood sugar levels, actually making these alterations is up to the patient.

A recent article published by the Huffington Post highlighted how diabetes management may sometimes involve an entire family.

Sally Herigstad told the newspaper that since her husband was diagnosed with the condition four years ago she has taken on a new role of caregiver and meal planner.

"Not one cookie has passed his lips since his blood sugar results were 298. The good part is that he can keep his blood sugar down most of the time just by controlling carbs and exercising like a madman," she said, quoted by the news source.

Herigstad explained that although healthy food tends to cost more than non-nutritious products, she doesn't mind spending the extra money because it would be much more expensive to pay for diabetes treatments needed to reign in her husband's uncontrolled blood sugar levels.

The news provider noted that individuals who do not have in-home caregivers, particularly those who are older adults, may benefit from hiring help from an agency that provides these services or creating a network of family and friends who can aid them in diabetes management.

Linda Haas, an endocrinology nurse specialist and clinical nurse advisor at the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs, said that some individuals with type 1 diabetes or type 2 diabetes may need help checking their feet for any persistent cuts or blisters that may indicate diabetic complications.

According to the American Diabetes Association, more than 25 million Americans have either type 1 diabetes or type 2 diabetes.