Tips on living with type 1 diabetes or type 2 diabetes

A type 1 diabetes or type 2 diabetes diagnosis may change people's lives rather quickly. Having everything they need to know about diabetes management piled on them at once may be too overwhelming to remember.

For this reason, a recent article published by the Washington-based newspaper The Northern Light highlighted the seven areas of self-care as outlined by the American Association of Diabetes Educators, which are also known as the AADE7.

These lifestyle tips aim to help individuals with type 1 diabetes or type 2 diabetes life healthier and avoid diabetic complications that may threaten their quality of life.

The first involves healthy eating. The newspaper reported that diabetics should learn to make better food choices by reading nutrition content labels, while paying special attention to the recommended portion sizes.

The American Diabetes Association (ADA) recommends that people with type 1 diabetes or type 2 diabetes eat small meals frequently throughout the day, keeping to a regular schedule. This way, individuals may be able to predict how their meals and snacks will affect their blood sugar levels.

The news provider said that the second suggestion from the AADE7 is that diabetics should recognize the importance of physical activity in their diabetes management program.

According to guidelines from the National Institutes of Health, adults should engage in at least 150 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity per week in order to maintain good fitness.

Blood glucose monitoring is one of the best ways that individuals with type 1 diabetes or type 2 diabetes can track the success of their self-care program. Therefore, the news source said it is important for these people to learn how to obtain blood sugar readings and keep track of their results.

Not all diabetics require diabetes medications, but those who do should remember to follow their prescribed drug regimen carefully, according to the AADE7. As time goes on, individuals with type 1 diabetes or type 2 diabetes may find that there are some obstacles that they face on a regular basis, which prevent them from practicing proper diabetes management. People who struggle to overcome these challenges on their own may consider enlisting the help of a diabetes educator, the newspaper said.

Other key aspects of the AADE7 include understanding the potential complications associated with diabetes so that steps can be taken to avoid these, as well as learning to cope with the stress of living with diabetes through healthy methods like meditation or exercise.

While the basics of a diabetic diet may be relatively simple to remember, some people who want to ensure that they are eating the right types of food work with a dietitian.

The ADA explains that a diabetic diet should exclude sugary and high-fat foods, as well as alcohol and tobacco. In order to maintain a good nutritional balance, individuals should focus on eating fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean protein, the organization suggests. It may be useful for the families of individuals who have type 1 diabetes or type 2 diabetes to consume a diabetic diet since this may reduce their odds of developing insulin resistance later in life.