If you are suffering from diabetes you must live with diabetes and the good news is that it is possible to live well (normal life) even with diabetes. You need to be watchful and cautious about certain aspects to make sure that things go well and your diabetes is under control. Several other serious diseases can occur as complication of diabetes or various diseases can be aggravated by presence of diabetes. If you want to prevent different serious diseases, you must keep diabetes (i.e. blood sugar) under control. Follow the steps given here to live well or live normal life even if you have diabetes.
1. Step one: regular check-ups
This is the most important step to keep diabetes under control. You must undergo regular check-ups, as directed/advised by your diabetologist. Your doctor/diabetologist will decide how frequently you need check ups and what tests you need to do for check-ups. Regular check ups include checking of blood sugar (at least once a month if your diabetes is under control), HbA1c (glycosylated hemoglobin, this indicated long term control), kidney function tests and certain examinations (such as examination foot by your diabetologist, eye examination by your ophthalmologist, general examination by your physician etc.):
2. Take medications/insulin regularly
If you are suffering from diabetes (type 1 or type-2 diabetes) you must take medications or insulin for diabetes regularly as advised by your diabetologist/doctor. Not taking medications regularly and timely manner is one of the common reasons of improper control of blood sugar or diabetes, which leads to various complications.
3. Proper diet for proper diabetes control:
Diet in diabetes is as important as that of medications. Diabetes is one of the few diseases where diet plays a vital role in management. Take a healthy well balanced diet as advised by ADA (American Diabetes Association). Follow the “plate method” for well control of diabetes. Your diabetes diet should supply all the essential nutrients and also it should be acceptable to your according to your local customs and traditions. If required or advised by your doctor, you can take certain dietary supplements such as calcium, vitamin D etc.
4. Regular exercise
Regular moderate physical exercise should be done by diabetics. Brisk walking for minimum 150 minutes per week spread over at least five days is recommended. During exercise our body can utilize glucose without need of insulin and as a result the insulin present in body is better utilized for metabolism of glucose and blood sugar is better controlled. Regular exercise helps in maintaining normal body weight which is good for diabetics.
5. Regular foot care and foot inspection
Complications in feet are one of the common diabetes complications. Take care of your feet and inspect them daily for early detection of diabetic foot complications. Check for any swelling, soreness, inflammation, infection, ulceration etc. and report to your doctor/ diabetologist immediately if noticed.
6. Adequate fluid intake
Maintain fluid/water intake of approximately 3 liters per day (8-10 glasses of extra fluid). Fluid can be in the form of water, fruit juice etc. Avoid alcohol intake.
7. Good sleep
Adequate sleep is essential for optimal health. Sleep well and maintain a regular sleeping time. Do not oversleep, which may not be helpful for good health and diabetes control.
Follow these seven steps and keep your diabetes under control and live health and meaningful/productive life. Do not get discouraged if you are diagnosed with diabetes, it is possible to lead normal life with diabetes; you just need to discipline your life.