10 Ways to prevent diabetes
Diabetes, a chronic disease, which affects millions of people all over the world. Some of the extreme and uncontrolled cases may even cause blindness, kidney failure, heart disease and other serious conditions.
There is a period of time when the blood sugar level is high but not as high to be diagnosed with diabetes, this time period is known as prediabetes. Research shows that 70% of the people going through the prediabetes stage go on to develop type 2 diabetes. However, with some precautionary measure going from prediabetes to diabetes can be avoided. The factors such as genes, age and past behaviors can’t be changed but still, you can manage to reduce the risk of diabetes by taking some steps and actions. Here are 10 such ways to help you avoid diabetes.
1. Remove Sugar and Refined Carbs from your Diet
Intake of sugar and refined carbs can take the prediabetic on the fast-track to developing diabetes. These foods are rapidly broken down to small sugar molecules by the body and get dissolved in the bloodstream. This increase in blood sugar level stimulates the pancreas to produce insulin which is the hormone that helps to remove sygar from bloodstream and secrete it into the bloodstream. However, when you’re prediabetic, the body cells grow resistant to the action of insulin and sugar level remains high while the pancreas keep secreting more insulin to bring the levels down. However if you keep taking these foods, there comes a point when the sugar level and the insulin level remain progressively higher and ultimately you develop type 2 diabetes. So, avoid these foods to reduce the risk of diabetes and be on the safe side.
2. Work-Out Regularly
Indulging in physical activity on a regular basis is also really helpful in the prevention of diabetes. As exercise helps to increase the insulin sensitivity of the cells so, lesser insulin is required to keep the blood sugar level under control. Exercises like aerobics, high-intensity interval training and strength training help to reduce insulin resistance and blood sugar in obese and prediabetic individuals. So, engage in regular physical exertion to stimulate increased insulin secretion and sensitivity to help yourself in the prevention of type 2 diabetes.
3. Water is your best friend
Water is the only natural beverage which can help you avoid diabetes as when you stick to it you would be able to avoid other beverages which contain a high level of sugar, preservatives and other harmful ingredients. The sugary beverages which include soda and punch are linked to an increased risk of developing diabetes. On the contrary, consuming water provides benefits such as increase in water consumption leads to better control of the blood sugar level as well as better insulin response. Therefore, reduce the risk of developing diabetes by substituting natural or unnatural sweetened beverages with water.
4. Control your Weight
Not everyone who develops diabetes might be overweight yet obesity is considered one of the key factors of developing it. Obese people with prediabetes tend to carry the extra weight around the abdominal organs like the liver. This is known as the visceral fat which promotes inflammation and insulin resistance which increases the risk of diabetes many folds. So, follow some healthy options to reduce your weight which include, low-carb, Mediterranean and vegetarian diets. Change your lifestyle and develop healthy eating habits that you can stick to in the long run to maintain the weight loss and reduce the risk of developing diabetes.
4. Quit Smoking
Smoking is the proven cause of many serious health issues including heart disease and cancers of lungs, prostate, breast and digestive tract. Smoking has also been linked to developing diabetes by many researches. However, the risk of diabetes is reduced to a great degree when you quit smoking for over five years. In short, smoking has been linked to increased risk of diabetes by this risk can be reduced by quitting it over time.
5. Portion Control
It’s important to avoid taking large portions of food whether you’re overweight or not to reduce the risk of developing diabetes if you’re already prediabetic. Since eating a lot of food at the same time causes high levels of blood sugar and insulin which increases the risk of diabetes. On the contrary, taking small and controlled portions can reduce this risk by a great degree. So, avoid taking large portions of meals and divide your food intake into smaller portion to help keep the blood sugar level under control and reduce the risk of diabetes substantially.
6. Include Fiber in your Diet
Addition of plenty of fiber to your diet plan helps with the management of weight by keeping the gut healthy. Fiber is divided into two categories: soluble and insoluble. The soluble type absorbs water while insoluble doesn’t. The soluble fiber absorbs water in the digestive tract and forms a gel which leads to a gradual increase in the blood sugar level. On the other hand, insoluble fiber is linked to reducing the blood sugar level and reducing the risk of developing diabetes. So, consume a good amount of fiber by eating unprocessed food to prevent the abrupt increase in the levels of blood sugar and insulin to reduce the risk of diabetes.
7. Optimize Vitamin D Levels
Vitamin D plays a vital role in controlling the blood sugar level. Study suggest that people who don’t intake enough vitamin D are vulnerable to all types of diabetes. A controlled research has proven that when vitamin D deficient people take vitamin supplements, the function of their insulin producing cells improves normalizing their blood sugar level and hence reduces the risk of diabetes significantly. Food sources that contain good amount of Vitamin D are fatty fish and cod liver oil and exposure to sun also increases vitamin D level in the blood. So, consume vitamin D rich foods and supplements to optimize its level and reduce the risk of diabetes.
8. Avoid the Intake of Processed Foods
Minimizing the consumption of processed food is an essential step if you want to reduce the risk of diabetes. Processed foods are linked to many health issues like heart diseases, obesity and diabetes. In order to reduce your risk of diabetes, avoid the packaged foods that are high in vegetable oils, refined grains and additives. So minimize the use of processed food and increase the intake of whole foods which have protective effects on health to reduce the risk of diabetes.
9. Drink Coffee or Tea
Research suggests that including tea or coffe in your diet reduces the risk of diabetes potentially. Coffee and tea help to protect against diabetes because they have antioxidants known as polyphenols. Green tea also contains a unique antioxidant called epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) that has been proved to reduce blood sugar release from the liver and increase insulin sensitivity. So add these healthy drinks to your diet to be safe from diabetes.
10. Follow a Low-carb diet
Following a low-carb diet can help to reduce the risk of developing diabetes. A low-carb diet has been a proven way of losing weight and keeping blood sugar and insulin levels under control by increasing insulin sensitivity of the cells. By minimizing the carb intake you make sure that the blood sugar level doesn’t rise after you ingest food. Hence, the body requires lesser insulin to maintain the level of sugar in the blood. Low-carb intake makes sure to reduce the fasting blood sugar as well which is a very healthy effect. So, make sure to follow a low-carb diet to reduce the risk of diabetes to the maximum.
By incorporating these changes into your lifestyle and creating a healthy long term diet plan you can reduce the risk of diabetes significantly. Remember that prevention is better than cure, so take care of yourself by avoiding processed food and other habits that may cause harm to your health. At the end of the day, it’s all about looking after yourself to lead a better diabetes-free life.