Over the past few decades, the prevalence of conditions such as diabetes and cancer have increased. Even though there have been major medical advances in the treatment of these conditions, it has led many people to wonder if there are healthier alternatives that can treat these diseases or prevent them in the first place. Diabetes, in particular, diabetes type two, can be helped by trying to change your lifestyle and improve the food you eat. Here are some natural ways to help to manage your diabetes.
Learning About Diabetes
It is important that you understand how diabetes affects you and what you need to do to make the condition manageable. The first step, however, is to get a diagnosis from a doctor if you feel that something is wrong. They can perform the tests and tell you if you have one of the forms of diabetes. If you do, then you need to learn all you can about the condition and how you can help yourself live a regular life. The three forms of diabetes are type 1, type 2, and gestational.
Type 1 is the most severe type because it means your body doesn’t produce any insulin at all. Because you need insulin to convert sugar into energy, you need to inject insulin each day to live. With type 2 diabetes, your body isn’t making enough insulin to keep your body working properly, which means you will still need to inject insulin, but you also need to manage your diet to prevent it getting worse. Some pregnant women develop gestational diabetes, but in most cases, it goes away after the birth. It has been found that those who had gestational diabetes are at a greater risk of developing diabetes later in life.
Liaise with Your Health Care Team
Although you are now going to be regularly checked by your doctor, you are the primary person who will be responsible for your care. It is up to you to ensure that you are taking the medication and that you are following the dietary recommendations. Along with your doctor, you also need to liaise with all the healthcare professionals you encounter to make sure they are aware of your condition. These professionals can include your dentist, pharmacist, nurse and other medical professionals you need. Frequently, with conditions such as diabetes, you might need additional support from a dietician, an eye doctor and perhaps a foot doctor.
One of the major changes that you need to make is to your diet. There are going to be many things you will need to avoid and others that you should cut back on to help keep your body healthy. You can consult your dietician to see if they can come up with a diet plan with you.
In the beginning, this might be difficult to stick to, but it is important that you try to persevere. You will need to choose foods that are lower in fat and calories, as well as less sugar and salt. You also want to choose foods that are higher in fiber such as pasta, crackers, bread, and rice. Fruits and vegetables are also something you need to increase, to give you more vitamins and antioxidants in your diet. It is also important to start thinking about your choices to see if they are still a healthy choice. For example, juice and soda will contain far too much sugar, so you need to choose water or a sugar-free alternative.
It is important that any change to your diet or your medication is done through your doctor. However, there are some natural remedies that have had some promising results and could help to lower your blood sugar levels. One of these is Ginseng, which the North American variety has been especially successful. Cinnamon has also been found to have some promising results. In one study, 79 people with type 2 diabetes who were not on insulin therapy took either a cinnamon extract or a placebo.
After four months, there was a slight but statistically significant reduction in fasting blood glucose levels in those that took the cinnamon. There are also benefits of taking Banaba leaf, which has seen some significant results along with foods containing magnesium and zinc. Aloe Vera is something that has been found to help with many ailments especially those associated with the skin such as burns and bites. However, there has also been a Japanese study that found there are a number of phytosterol compounds from the Aloe Vera gel that helped to reduce blood glucose levels.
Along with trying to change your diet, you also need to keep active or start to become more active if you led a sedentary life before. Your goal should be to do some activity every day, even if it’s just taking a walk, it will all help to keep you fit and healthy. You need to keep an eye on your blood sugar, especially in the early days, so you know what effect the exercise is having. If you are finding that you aren’t able to control your glucose levels effectively, then you need to speak to your doctor.
Part of being more active is also so you can get to a healthy weight. The more weight you are carrying, the more difficult it is to balance your blood glucose levels accurately. As well as doing activities such as walking and swimming, you should also be doing things to help you relax. Stress can raise your blood sugar, so you want to try and be as relaxed as possible. Try doing yoga or Pilates to help relax your mind as well as get you fit.
Being diagnosed with diabetes for the first time can be both upsetting and scary, but there are many people out there who are available to give you advice and support. With this support and the right diet, you should be able to lead a healthy life.