4 tips to managing your diabetes in the Northwest
November is National Diabetes Month, so there’s no better time to take charge of your health and get empowered.
Diabetes affects more than 30 million people in the United States.* Even though diabetes is a lifelong condition, you can live a healthy life by taking action. Whether you’re newly diagnosed, have been living with it for some time, or simply want to prevent it, there are steps you can take every day.
4 ways you can manage diabetes
1. Choose healthy food
Making smart food choices can improve your mood and help you manage your weight. Try eating smaller portion sizes and eat high-fiber foods to keep you fuller longer. Set yourself up for success by keeping healthy choices like fruit and pre-cut vegetables available and visible in your home so you reach for the smarter meal or snack. Bring a healthy meal to work or a potluck.
2. Exercise regularly
Physical activity can help you manage your weight and lower your blood sugar. Work toward a goal of 30 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity every day. With all the outdoor options the Northwest has to offer, it’s easy to find a place for a walk or a hike. Or try something new, like a bike ride or a yoga class.
3. Take your prescribed diabetes medication
Taking your prescribed medication is an important part of managing your health. Get familiar with your medications – know your prescription name, dosage, and how the medication affects you. Having trouble remembering to take your doses on time? Consider using a pill box with the days of the week or download an app on your phone to remind you.
4. Keep your blood sugar in target range
Work with your doctor to understand your appropriate blood sugar and A1C (average blood sugar over a 3-month period) ranges. Knowing where your blood sugar should be will help you monitor and manage it.
Resources to help you take charge
You aren’t alone in managing your diabetes — your doctor is with you every step of the way. And Kaiser Permanente has various resources to help you take charge of your health.
Visit kp.org/diabetes to learn more about the basics of living healthier with diabetes. You can even take an assessment to determine if you may be at risk.
*CDC, accessed September 26, 2018.
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