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The Ultimate Guide To Living With Diabetes

Updated: Apr 7, 2023

Diabetes is a chronic disease that affects your body's ability to produce and use insulin. When you have diabetes, your body doesn't produce enough of the hormone insulin or its cells don't respond to the insulin that's produced, so glucose (sugar) builds up in your blood instead of entering the cells.

If left untreated, diabetes can lead to serious health complications: heart disease; stroke; kidney failure; high blood pressure; blindness; amputations due to infections in the extremities caused by nerve damage (neuropathy); and erectile dysfunction among men.

Learn to manage stress.

Learning to manage stress is one of the most important things you can do for yourself. If you have diabetes, stress can lead to high blood glucose levels and even a low blood sugar attack.

To help you better understand why it's so important to manage your stress levels, here are some facts:

  • Stress affects every part of your body, including your brain and pancreas. When you're under stress, your body releases hormones that tell your brain to make more cortisol (or glucocorticoids) and adrenaline (epinephrine). These two hormones tell your body how much insulin it should release into the bloodstream.

  • When we're feeling stressed out or angry, our bodies release these chemicals in large amounts which tells our brains that there's danger nearby which causes us to feel afraid or worried about what could happen next if nothing is done about it right away! But when people experience chronic high levels over time like this then eventually their bodies become less sensitive towards releasing those same chemicals so well anymore which means they don't get scared easily anymore either! Yikes! That sounds bad but thankfully there are ways around this too...

Exercise is important.

Exercise is important for many reasons. It helps to lower blood pressure, cholesterol levels and stress.

It also encourages a good night’s sleep, which can be hard to come by when you have diabetes. Exercise improves self-esteem and mood as well, which also aids in the prevention of diabetic complications like heart disease or stroke.

Go to all your appointments with your diabetes health care team.

You can't manage diabetes alone. You need a team to help you. The members of your diabetes health care team should include your doctor, a dietitian, and a pharmacist or other health care provider who can give you information about insulin and other diabetes medicines.

Your doctor will assess how well your blood sugar is controlled and watch for any complications that might develop. Your dietitian gives advice on eating healthy foods and balancing meals with exercise to help keep blood sugars under control.

And the pharmacist or other health care provider can provide information about insulin types and doses, as well as oral medicines such as metformin or glipizide (Glucotrol).

Follow your treatment plan, especially taking your medicines as prescribed and getting tested when you should.

  • Take your medicines as prescribed. If you have diabetes, you will almost certainly be taking one or more medicines to help control your blood glucose levels and keep them within a normal range. Some of these drugs are taken by injection, while others are swallowed. Your doctor or nurse can tell you how often to take each type of medication, but he or she will also give you specific instructions about how often to check your blood sugar and how much insulin (if any) is needed for each meal. Don

Follow a meal plan that's right for you.

You should follow a meal plan that's right for you. A healthy meal plan will include all the food groups, including carbohydrates (breads, cereals, pasta and rice), proteins (fish and meat) and fats (dairy products such as cheese).

It's important to eat the right amount of carbohydrates. Carbohydrates provide the body with energy from foods like breads, cereals, pasta and rice. Carbohydrates should account for 45% of your daily energy intake.

You should also eat at least 5 portions of fruit and vegetables every day to help keep your blood sugar levels stable. Try adding more fruit into your diet such as bananas or strawberries - they contain lots of important nutrients which can help manage diabetes by helping prevent complications such as heart disease or stroke later in life

Don't drink alcohol if your blood glucose is high or you're ill or on antibiotics.

Alcohol is bad for your blood sugar. Alcohol can raise blood sugar levels, which could increase your risk of complications.

Alcohol may also cause low blood sugar (hypoglycemia). Alcohol can make diabetes symptoms worse, such as dizziness or fatigue.

Drinking alcohol can also lead to weight gain and overeating, which makes it harder to control your glucose levels in the long term.

If you smoke, quit. If you don't smoke, don't start.

If you smoke, quit. If you don't smoke, don't start. Smoking is bad for your health—but it's even worse for people with diabetes.

Smoking increases your risk of diabetes and heart disease by raising your blood pressure and cholesterol levels and reducing the amount of good (HDL) cholesterol in your body.

It also makes it harder to control glucose levels in people with diabetes because smoking decreases how well the insulin works in their bodies.

And if that's not enough reason to kick the habit once and for all, consider this: smoking during pregnancy can lead to complications such as miscarriage or stillbirths.

When you have diabetes, it's important to take great care of yourself

When you have diabetes, it's important to take great care of yourself. Diabetes is a serious disease that can be managed but needs to be taken care of.

There are many things that you can do to make sure that your body stays healthy and you stay out of hospital:

  • Follow your treatment plan. This means taking the medicine the doctors tell you are right for you and doing what they say about how much exercise and what kind of food should be in your diet.

  • Get regular checkups and tests done so that any problems with your health can be spotted early on before they get too serious or cause complications in other parts of your body or mind.

  • Eat well-prepared meals from fresh ingredients, not just ready made meals from packets or cans as these often contain lots more salt than necessary which makes it easier for water retention (swelling) in some people with high blood pressure issues due to their condition having high levels like those caused by excessive sodium intake over time rather than just drinking too much water at once without eating anything else afterwards which might cause weight gain if taken regularly over long periods without proper nutrition including fibre intake at regular intervals throughout day instead only eating once per day per meal per week etcetera...


Living with diabetes is a lifelong commitment to yourself. There are many things that you can do to help yourself, but it's important that you stay focused on taking care of your health and not let the stress of living with diabetes get in the way of living life.


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