While a diagnosis of diabetes can be life-altering, it isn’t a death sentence. After all, statistics show that 30.3 million Americans, or 9.4% of the population, currently have diabetes. And with 84.1 million Americans considered prediabetic, the burden of managing diabetes definitely isn’t lonely.
At Walker Family Care, we’ve put together some information about ways your life may change after a diabetes diagnosis.
This diagnosis is easier to handle when you’re working with a trained and knowledgeable physician. At Walker Family Care, Rogers Walker, MD, and the rest of our team are here to help you navigate this disease. With a focus on compassionate care, Dr. Walker helps you control your diabetes and live as normal a life as possible.
Blood glucose serves as your main source of energy, which it processes from the food you eat. Your pancreas makes a hormone called insulin that helps transfer the glucose from your blood to your cells. Diabetes occurs when there are issues with your body’s insulin production or use.
In Type 1 diabetes, your body doesn’t make insulin. You need to take insulin every day to survive, because your cells don’t receive enough glucose without it. In Type 2 diabetes, your body doesn’t make or use its insulin properly.
Both types of diabetes can leave you with too much glucose in your blood. As a result, you may experience these symptoms:
Symptoms typically develop quicker and more dangerously in Type 1 diabetes.
In order to manage your diabetes, you need to get used to some changes in order to live a normal, healthy life.
Self-monitoring your blood glucose level is a key component of effective diabetes management that helps you know when to eat, complete physical activities, or take insulin. Although machines vary, almost all self-monitoring blood glucose machines use a quick finger prick to draw the small amount of blood needed for testing.
The severity of your diabetes determines if you need to inject or inhale insulin to regulate your blood sugar levels. Although mainly needed for those with Type 1 diabetes, extra insulin may also be necessary if you have Type 2 diabetes. Either way, it’s an important part of controlling your diabetes.
Your body processes carbs as blood glucose. But some carbs are processed more quickly than others. As a diabetic, you learn which foods contain fast carbs and which contain slow carbs. For example, your body processes sugars found in bread and sweet treats quicker than the carbs found in fruits and vegetables.
Some diabetics should avoid alcohol altogether. All diabetics should never binge drink and should try to stick to one or two drinks. Moderate drinking makes blood sugar rise, but excess drinking can actually tank your blood sugar down to dangerous levels. Alcohol can also affect your willpower and judgment, both of which are a key part of safely managing your diabetes.
While diabetes itself can harm your body, it also has a laundry list of complications you need to consider. Almost every disease is easier to manage with improved diet, increased physical activity, and the resulting weight loss. Diabetes is no different. You don’t have to be a health nut to effectively manage your diabetes, but lifestyle changes can make it easier.
You’re not alone in your journey to control your diabetes. At Walker Family Care, we can help you manage your diabetes and continue to live a healthy life. Call or click today to request an appointment at our Little River office.