If you are one of the 26 million Americans diagnosed with diabetes, managing your weight is a crucial part of dealing with the disease.
Diabetes Awareness Month, celebrated in November, is an initiative primarily focused on finding a cure for the disease. Diabetes Awareness Month is also a time to educate people on how to manage the disease through healthy living.
Managing your weight not only promotes good health, it also decreases your risk of complications from diabetes. Some of the complications of diabetes include:
- High blood pressure
- Kidney damage
- Heart disease
Follow these tips to keep the number on the scale down.
Keep a food journal.
Can you recall everything you ate during a certain day? Probably not. Maybe you graze on snacks at work or raid the fridge before bed. Writing down what you eat allows you to track portion sizes, calorie intake, and your common pitfalls. You can use a simple notebook or find an app for your smartphone or computer like MyFitnessPal.
Stock up on good food.
Set yourself up for success by stocking your pantry and fridge with nutritious food. Make sure you have fruits, vegetables, whole grains, dairy foods, and lean protein. Get rid of the sweets, fatty snacks, and other junk food.
Exercise is a key element of weight management. Carve out 30 minutes a day for some sort of physical activity. Try walking or biking. If you find an activity you enjoy, you are more likely to stick to the routine.
Make it a family affair.
Getting the whole family on board for healthy eating and exercise is a great way to stay motivated.
Ask for help.
If you are overweight, or find yourself gaining weight, talk to your doctor. You physician may recommend a nutritionist to aid with your diet.
Central Florida Regional Hospital's Diabetes Education Program can provide the support and information you need. We offer classes and individual counseling to help you understand the disease and learn about the effects of nutrition. For more information or to register for classes, call (407) 321-4500.