Diabetes is a condition in which your body doesn’t properly process food for use as energy. If you have diabetes, your body either doesn't make enough insulin or can't use its own insulin as well as it should. This chronic disease is the seventh-leading cause of death in the U.S. and the number one cause of kidney failure, lower-limb amputations and adult-onset blindness.
While there are different types of diabetes, Type 2 diabetes is the most common. Fortunately, it’s also preventable.
Consider adopting the following lifestyle changes to help keep this chronic condition at bay:
• Talk to your doctor. What’s considered a healthy diet change for your friend might not be considered healthy for you, too. The best way to determine how to go about changing your diet is by talking with your doctor first.
• Lose weight and keep it off. You may be able to prevent or delay diabetes by losing 5 to 7 percent of your starting weight.
• Move more. Aim to get at least 30 minutes of physical activity five days a week. If you haven’t been active, talk with your doctor to find out what a safe exercise plan is for you.
• Eat healthy. A healthy diet is key to keeping chronic conditions like diabetes at bay. Try things like eating smaller portions, staying away from fatty foods and choosing low-calorie beverages to reduce the amount of calories you eat each day and help you lose weight.
• Get screened. Go to your doctor for routine diabetes screenings. These screenings will let you know how at-risk you are and will help you determine how to further prevent diabetes.
Remember, you have the power to keep your health in check. To find out more about diabetes and your personal risk of developing this disease, talk to your doctor today.