Five Steps You Can Take to Prevent Type 2 Diabetes

Over 84 million Americans are at risk of developing Type 2 diabetes. You’re more likely to develop this condition if you’re overweight, have high blood pressure, aren’t active, or have a family history of diabetes. If your doctor has told you that you’re at risk of developing diabetes, you can take steps to make sure that doesn’t happen. Find out what you can do right now to lower your risk.

Schedule regular blood sugar screening

Make regular blood sugar screenings a part of your arsenal to combat the risk of Type 2 diabetes. Ask your doctor for a hemoglobin A1C test. It measures your average blood sugar level over the previous three months. If your average level is higher than recommended, you can take action to bring it within a healthy range.

Add the fasting blood sugar test to your regular screening. It checks your blood sugar level between meals. Blood sugar falls when you haven’t eaten and should remain below 100 milligrams per deciliter. Higher levels mean your body is having issues managing the amount of sugar in your blood.

Regular blood sugar screenings are an important part of stopping Type 2 diabetes before it rears its ugly head.

Cut back on processed sugar

Having a candy bar or pastry every now and then won’t cause major issues, but regularly noshing on foods packed with processed sugar puts you on the fast track to developing Type 2 diabetes.

The refined sugar found in soda, candy, and sugary cereals causes a sudden, sharp rise in blood sugar. Over time, the body becomes less able to control the amount of sugar in your blood.

What’s more, high amounts of sugar lurk in less obvious places, like ketchup, granola bars, yogurt, smoothies, and salad dressing, so you may be unaware of just how much you’re eating. The best way to cut back on processed sugar is to eat more fresh, whole foods and fewer packaged items.

Eat plenty of fiber

Fiber does more than keep your digestive system healthy. It puts the brakes on how quickly sugar enters the bloodstream, making it a crucial part of managing the amount of glucose in your blood.

Most Americans are skimping on the fiber, and it’s having a major impact on health. Diets low in fiber increase your Type 2 diabetes risk. Load up on whole grains like oats, brown rice, whole wheat, millet, and quinoa to boost diabetes protection.

Maintain a healthy weight

Being overweight is a major risk factor for Type 2 diabetes. Nearly 90% of people who have diabetes are overweight. Carrying extra baggage puts an additional burden on your body’s requirement for insulin – the hormone that controls your blood glucose level. After a while, the burden becomes too much, and the body loses its ability to reign in blood glucose. Trimming down if you’re overweight is one of the best ways to lower your Type 2 diabetes risk.

Get moving

Getting plenty of physical activity lowers the chance that you’ll develop Type 2 diabetes. Your cells become more sensitive to insulin when you get regular exercise, which helps keeps blood sugar in check.

Insulin sensitivity is crucial for preventing Type 2 diabetes. You don’t have to become a gym rat to reap the benefits of exercise though. Just find an activity that you enjoy. If you have trouble getting going, start by walking. Taking a 30-minute walk each day lowers your diabetes risk.

Take control of your health today. The power is in your hands. Visit the team at Danvers Family Doctors, P.C. and they’ll help you develop a solid Type 2 diabetes prevention plan, so you can remain vibrant and healthy for years to come.

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