Currently, more than 500 million people in the world suffer from diabetes, that is, excess sugar in the blood. In Colombia, according to a recent report by the High Cost Account, more than 1.5 million patients suffer from this disease that affects organs such as the heart and kidneys.
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According to figures from the International Diabetes Federation, in the world 537 million people between the ages of 20 and 79 live with this disease and the total number of diagnosed patients is expected to increase to 784 million in 2045, which represents a 46% increase
Its diagnosis is made through a fasting blood sample in which glucose is at a value greater than 126 mg/dl. As well as determined by a blood glucose value after the intake of 75 g of glucose, greater than 199 mg/dl.
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In this way, experts agree that diabetes is much more than glucose, it affects organs that are not visible like the heart and kidneys, being a precursor to chronic diseases such as heart failure and chronic kidney disease, which in many cases they can be prevented.
For this reason, Specialists point out some elements that must be taken into account when dealing with the disease: diet, exercise and medication.
According to an article published by the Mayo Clinic, healthy eating is the cornerstone of a healthy life, with or without diabetes. But if you have diabetes, you need to know how food affects your blood glucose levels.
According to the entity, it is important to be informed about the carbohydrate count and the size of the portions. A key to many diabetes management plans is learning to count carbohydrates. Carbohydrates tend to have the most influence on blood glucose levels. For people who use insulin at mealtime, it is important to know how much carbohydrate is in the food so that you can get the right insulin dose.
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Experts also point out that it is essential to ensure that each meal is well balanced. As much as possible, plan for each meal to include a good mix of starches, fruits and vegetables, proteins, and fats. Pay attention to the types of carbohydrates you choose.
Some carbohydrates, like fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, are better than others. These foods are low in carbohydrates and have fiber that helps keep blood glucose levels more stable.
According to the same health entity, physical activity is another important aspect of the diabetes control plan. When a person exercises, the muscles use sugar (glucose) for energy. Regular physical activity also helps the body use insulin more efficiently.
These factors work together to lower the level of glucose in the blood. The more vigorous the physical activity, the longer the effect will last. But even light activities, such as housework, gardening, or standing for long periods, can improve your blood glucose level.
In general, most adults should get at least 150 minutes per week of moderate aerobic activity. Try to do moderate aerobic activity for about 30 minutes a day, most days a week. You must be supervised by a health professional.
Keep in mind that if you have been inactive for a long time, your doctor may want to check your general health before giving you advice. He or she may recommend a balanced mix of aerobic and muscle-strengthening exercises.
Insulin and other diabetes medications are designed to lower blood glucose levels when diet and exercise alone are not enough to control diabetes. However, the Mayo Clinic warns in its publication that the effectiveness of these drugs depends on the timing and size of the dose.
A first step is to store insulin properly. Insulin that is stored incorrectly or whose expiration date has passed may not be effective. Insulin is especially sensitive to extreme temperatures.
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Also, be careful with new medications. If you are considering taking an over-the-counter medicine or your doctor prescribes a new medicine for another condition, such as high blood pressure or high cholesterol, ask your doctor if it can affect your blood glucose levels.
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