Understand diabetes, take control

Understand diabetes, take control

Diabetes, blood pressure and heart attack are the uninvited guests in our lives due to our unhealthy lifestyle. According to doctors, 70-90 per cent of all chronic ailments are a direct result of the lifestyle choices we make. When it comes to diabetes management, factors like diet, exercise and stress must be taken into consideration before treatment protocol is designed.

Eat right

Obesity is a chronic condition for which there is no foolproof cure. The secret of weight management is to eat less and burn more calories. Self-monitoring in the form of recording food intake daily, checking weight once a week and regular physical activity is vital if you wish to maintain your ideal weight. Evidence suggests that moderate weight loss of 5-10 per cent of initial body weight significantly improves the health of obese patients by reducing the risk of diabetes.

Every person with diabetes needs a customised diet plan. Some basic rules are to avoid exceeding the prescribed calorie intake, avoid foods rich in saturated fats (red meat, coconut oil and palm oil) and restrict carbohydrate intake while consuming food rich in protein. Foods with a greater proportion of polyunsaturated fats (sunflower, soybean, corn, cottonseed) and monounsaturated fats (olive oil, canola oil, peanut oil) are usually suggested by dieticians.  Fibre-rich food (nuts, legumes and whole grains) and fish are considered appropriate.  A person with diabetes is advised to eat small but frequent meals rather than two big meals a day.

Work out to stay fit

Doctors recommend at least 30 minutes of exercise a day, five days a week. Exercise keeps the heart healthy and increases peace of mind and self-esteem. Consult your physician before starting on an exercise routine. Resistance (weight) training helps the heart. You may be among those who do not lose weight despite a fairly rigorous exercise routine but your heart is sure to stay healthy as long as you keep walking or working out. All you need is a pair of shoes to start walking. Ensure that you keep the pace brisk when you go on your morning/ evening walk.

Stress busters

Stress is an integral part of life but uncontrolled stress is sure to prove dangerous. Ensure that you get a good night’s sleep, spend quality time with your family, play with your children, surprise your wife with a cup of  tea in the morning because such investments give you the returns which no wealth management company can match.  
The only way to beat stress is to have realistic expectations of yourself, adopt healthy eating habits, practise yoga and follow a simple but effective exercise regime.  
Alcohol/tobacco indulgence, which begins as an ‘excuse’ to fight stress, should be avoided.