Diabetes is seventh on the list of the top causes of death in the U.S. This is a shocking statistic considering how easy it is to diagnose diabetes and how effective treatment is for those who take the right steps. Type 2 diabetes is a common form of the condition, with about 95% of diabetes sufferers having Type 2.
Type 2 occurs when the body does not produce enough insulin or does not use insulin in the blood correctly. The imbalance can cause serious side effects, which, if left untreated, can lead to organ damage and in some cases, death.
Type 2 diabetes is more likely to occur among some sections of the population, but we are all at risk of developing the condition. Bad lifestyle habits, ignoring early warning signs, and family history of the disease often lead to the development of the condition. For some, it may be a matter of controlling any potential worsening, while for others if you heed the warnings signs, you may avoid getting diabetes.
How to Prevent Type 2 Diabetes
Let’s take a closer look at eight ways to prevent Type 2 diabetes.
1. It’s in the genes.
If diabetes is in your family, then you may be a candidate for developing the condition. In a way you are lucky; you have a warning that Type 2 is in the genes, but you need to heed the warning. Consult with your physician regularly, and inform them of your family history.
2. We are what we eat.
Type 2 diabetes is known as Adult Onset Diabetes or Acquired Diabetes. This is because bad habits lead to its development. Eating poorly, such as foods high in sugars and the wrong types of fats, causes havoc with our blood sugar levels. The organs in the body react to the imbalance and if you are prone, or a long-term poor eater, then Type 2 diabetes is almost a certainty.
3. Eat regularly and in smaller amounts.
Almost as important as eating the right foods are good eating habits. There is a reason for the recommendation of three good meals a day. They keep your blood sugar levels at a steady rate, avoiding highs and lows. Portion amounts are vital too, so as not to overload the system at meal time.
4. Regular exercise
Get off the couch, and get out in the fresh air. Sitting all day can lead to the body’s not being able to fight the buildups of fat and the strain on your organs. Even though going to the gym is a good idea, people of all ages should sit less and walk more. Thirty minutes in the park can make a big difference if you exercise daily.
5. Lose a few pounds.
Everything in moderation. At Elkins Park Family Medicine, we often see the best results in patients who tackle a problem one step at a time. If you need to lose weight, and it is vital in prediabetes patients, try doing it a few pounds at a time. Setting small milestones and reaching them is better than continually failing to reach a big target.
6. Listen to your doctor.
If the doctor tells you that you could be a candidate, then heed the warning. Ask for advice, do what they say, and make those lifestyle changes. It can be a lot easier preventing the onset of Type 2 diabetes than trying to make the adjustments to living with the condition.
7. Take action as you age.
Type 2 diabetes often sneaks up on a patient as they age. It is why some medical people call it adult onset diabetes. When in your early 40s, your body begins to slow down, maybe just a bit every year. This is when you need to take preventive action against Type 2 diabetes. Get more active, cut down on meal sizes, and watch what you eat.
8. Avoid stress.
Stress has many ill effects on the body. When you combine it with other risk factors, you may be primed for Type 2 diabetes. Take a look at your life, see where the stress is coming from, and how you can get rid of it. Change jobs, cut down on money worries, and maybe even look at stressful friendships.
Take action today
At Elkins Park Family Medicine, we see diabetes patients often, and we’re confident that we can see and help you with any possible corrective or even preventive action. Schedule an appointment today, and take the first step in your Type 2 diabetes prevention program.