Diabetics have to be more careful about diet, chemical and medicinal treatments. They must be more regimented than their non-diabetes counterparts. But effectively managing the disease can result in more energy, less thirsty, faster healing, and fewer skin or bladder infections. There’s also a reduced risk of heart attack or stroke, eye problems, pain, tingling or numbness in hands and feet, or kidney problems.
Know the ABC’s of Diabetes.
A – As1C is a blood test that measures blood glucose levels. It’s different that a daily blood sugar test, in that it measures the average level across three months. Because ongoing high sugar levels can lead to difficulties with your heart, blood vessels, kidneys, feet, and eyes, it’s important to be aware of your level of risk.
B – Blood Pressure is the force of your blood against the wall of your blood vessels. If too high, your heart must work harder to distribute insulin to the cells throughout your body. High blood pressure can be a precursor to heart attack, stroke, and kidney damage.
C – Cholesterol comes in two types: LDL and HDL. LDL, or “bad” cholesterol clogs the blood vessels. This can cause stroke or heart attack. HDL or “good” cholesterol helps remove the back cholesterol from the blood vessels.
When you’ve properly managed the ABC’s of diabetes, your risks for these events lessen.
- Lower your stress. Stress can increase glucose levels in the blood.
- Ask for help. If you feel down or depressed, it can exacerbate the symptoms you experience.
- Eat well. Planning meals that are high in fiber, and increasing the amount of whole foods can make a lasting difference.
- Exercise regularly. Set goals and get active at least 2-3 times weekly.
- Brush your teeth and floss every day.
- Don’t smoke.
- Manage your diabetes through regular testing of blood sugar, blood pressure, and cholesterol, as well as weight.
November is American Diabetes Awareness Month. Join us as we shine a light on and salute the 29 million Americans with diabetes to raise awareness and create a sense of urgency about this growing public health crisis. #ThisIsDiabetes