November is Diabetes Awareness Month and communities nationwide are teaming up to bring attention to diabetes and the many resources available to help keep our communities happier and healthier. This year’s focus is on prediabetes and prevention.
Prediabetes is a serious health condition where your blood sugar levels are higher than normal, but not high enough yet to be diagnosed as type 2 diabetes. According to the CDC, more than 1 in 3 U.S. adults have prediabetes, however the majority of people don’t know they have it.
So, what can you do to lower your risk for prediabetes?
Smalls Steps, Big Difference
You are what you eat, this is an age old saying and definitely holds true to those living with prediabetes. Your eating habits and daily activities play a huge role in your risk for prediabetes, however even the smallest changes can make a huge difference in lowering your risk. Setbacks are natural and we can all enjoy the occasional indulgence—the key is to get back on track as soon as you can.
Don’t Die for Your Diet
Taking small steps in adjusting your lifestyle is the way to go when talking long-term solutions to prevent diabetes. Choosing healthier foods and drinks most of the time is the best mantra to live by when it comes to choosing your daily meals. No one is expecting you to surrender every unhealthily delicious snack or meal completely, however choosing to indulge less and make healthier eating choices more is just one of many ways to make small adjustments to your diet that will eventually become habitual. As you progress along your diet overhaul, you’ll find it will become easier and easier to make healthier choices most of the time.
Track and Trace Your Weight
Maintaining a healthy weight can be key in preventing diabetes, and the best way to maintain a healthy weight is to know where you stand. Weekly weigh-ins can be a good way of knowing when you should cut back on the snacks or get in those extra steps during your daily exercise routine. Having a benchmark can help you track your progress and shows how your minor lifestyle changes are impacting your health.
Limiting your time spent sitting and getting at least thirty minutes of physical activity five days a week is a great way to start on your path toward a healthier lifestyle. Exercise doesn’t need to be done all at once; you can breakup your daily exercise throughout the day to help you work into a routine.
Prediabetes is reversible and there are numerous resources you can look to help you get your health back on track. Making a plan, tracking your progress and getting support from your health care professional and loved ones can help you make the lifestyle changes necessary to prevent diabetes.
A Winning Game Plan
If you’re one the many Americans who are struggling with their prediabetes diagnosis, know that there are institutions and programs that want to see you win and thrive in your healthcare journey. Setting goals, tracking your progress, and making long-term lifestyle changes can make the difference between a happy and healthy life versus one plagued with numerous chronic conditions, and increasing medical costs. To learn more about prediabetes and how you can lower your risks or reverse your prediabetes diagnosis go online to the following resources:
- National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases
- National Diabetes Prevention Program
- Seventh Day Adventist Clinic Diabeatit Program
- Guam Diabetes Control Coalition