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Health 15 July 2017
By: Natasha Tanga

8 Simple Ways to Prevent Diabetes

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One of the most common epidemic in our times, diabetes is getting harder to combat. With numerous food sold in supermarkets and restaurants are loaded with sugars and carbohydrate, the lifestyle of most city dwellers are sedentary, leading to even a greater risk of diabetes. However, there are also simple, practical steps of prevention that can be taken to keep diabetes at bay and we have wrote them down for you below.

1. Check your sugar levels 

Blood sugar test will help you to understand whether you have prediabetes and what are your chances of developing diabetes. If you get diagnosed with prediabetes, then you can take the right steps and prevent it from transforming into irreversible diabetes.

2. Eat healthy

Eat a healthy diet that has low calories, especially low saturated fats. Trials have shown that fat intake should not exceed 30 percent of the total calorie intake, whereas saturated fats should be restricted to just 10 percent. Include more of vegetables, fresh fruits, whole grains, dairy products and sources of omega 3 fats. 

Also, increase your fibre intake. Fiber is essential to preventing diabetes, because it takes your body longer to digest high-fiber foods. Eat at least 45 to 50 grams of fiber a day. With high-fiber carbs, glucose is released slowly, preventing a typical blood sugar spike.

3. Remove refined sugar and carbs from your diet

Eating sugary foods and refined carbs can put at-risk individuals on the fast track to developing diabetes. Your body rapidly breaks them down into small sugar molecules, which are then absorbed into your bloodstream. The resulting rise in blood sugar stimulates your pancreas to produce insulin, a hormone that helps sugar get out of the bloodstream and into your body’s cells.

In people with prediabetes, the body’s cells are resistant to insulin’s action, so sugar remains high in the blood. To compensate, the pancreas produces more insulin, attempting to bring blood sugar down to a healthy level. Over time, this can lead to progressively higher blood sugar and insulin levels, until the condition eventually turns into diabetes.

4. Limit your portion size 

How much you eat and when you eat is as important as what you eat. Reducing portion size and dividing meals throughout the day reduces the risk of obesity and diabetes. Eating proportionately will definitely be more helpful than starving yourself and overeating later due to excessive hunger. Irregularity in pattern of eating also causes drastic changes in blood sugar levels.

5. Be physically active

The best way to stay healthy is to exercise. It will help you strengthen your body for handling blood glucose, the key to preventing diabetes. Studies have also shown that exercise increases insulin sensitivity, providing long-lasting blood sugar benefits. 

All kinds of physical activity lowers blood sugar levels by taking glucose from the blood and muscle to use as fuel. In addition to jogging, biking or swimming, include some type of strength training. Glucose is stored in the muscles, so by lifting weights, you use that glucose as fuel and also build and tone muscle, which then provides additional glucose storage 

6. Quit smoking

People who smoke double their chances of developing diabetes. Even moreso, smoking may make your body more resistant to insulin, which can lead to higher blood sugar levels. Uncontrolled blood sugar can lead to serious complications from diabetes, including problems with your kidneys, heart, and blood vessels.

7. Get sufficient sleep

A good night’s sleep of at least 7-8 hours in a day is a must, as adequate sleep will keep your energy levels high during the day. While getting too little sleep can increase your appetite and reduce your level of satiety, causing you to crave carbohydrates and sugary foods. Over time, indulging in these cravings can wreak havoc on your insulin and blood sugar levels, as well as your body weight. 

Also, when you’re short on sleep, you’re more likely to feel tired and less inclined to exercise, which is a problem because regular exercise helps with weight management and blood sugar control.

8. Consume cinnamon

Cinnamon may help lower blood sugar and fight diabetes by imitating the effects of insulin and increasing glucose transport into cells. It can also help lower blood sugar by increasing insulin sensitivity, making insulin more efficient at moving glucose into cells. 

Our Relief Sari range also believes in the power of cinnamon. While it does not contain a lot of vitamins and minerals to qualify as a superfood, its simplicity yet effectiveness in lowering blood sugar sure is convincing.

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