Type 2 diabetes can have many negative health consequences—if you have this disease, you’re more likely to be overweight, which can significantly increase your chances of getting heart disease or having to go through cancer treatments later in life. Type 2 diabetes occurs when your body can’t use insulin in the correct way, causing a build up of sugar in the bloodstream. Over time, this sugar buildup can cause eye, kidney, nerve, heart, and blood vessel damage, none of which are healthy, let alone pleasant to deal with. Knowing how to prevent diabetes is therefore very important, especially when you take into consideration the benefits this prevention can have on your health. The following suggestions provide easy, interrelated methods to prevent this disease and demonstrate why your body will thank you in the long run:
1. Keep your diet healthy – Eating healthy helps keep your body running at its highest level and greatly reduces your risk of diabetes. Maintaining a balanced diet provides your body with the nutrients you need to keep your muscles, brain, and heart functioning well. Getting the right amount of nutrients also helps strengthen bones and tendons and can help prevent serious chronic diseases. Make sure to get lots of fresh fruits and vegetables, lean proteins, and choose whole grains whenever possible.
2. Exercise regularly – Exercising is one of the best ways to prevent type 2 diabetes since it is so effective at helping maintain a healthy weight. Doctors recommend doing at least 30 minutes of physical activity each day, which is a perfectly feasible time commitment for most people. Exercising has a host of other benefits as well; it can improve your mood, put you at a lower risk for cancer, depression, and heart disease, and boost your energy and concentration.
3. Lose a little weight if you need to – If you follow the tip above, this step will probably come naturally, but it’s still important enough to articulate on its own. Being overweight is one of the biggest causes of type 2 diabetes, so even if you’re even slightly above the weight your doctor recommends for you, try and drop a few pounds to keep yourself out of the at-risk zone. Additionally, losing weight decreases your blood pressure, puts you at lower risk for heart disease, and even improves your sleep habits.
4. Manage your cholesterol and blood pressure – People with higher cholesterol and blood pressure are typically at a higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes, so if you know yours are slightly higher than they should be, make sure to manage them accordingly. The tips above will all definitely help lower both cholesterol and blood pressure, but talking to your doctor and making sure you’re taking the appropriate medications can help reduce these levels even more significantly.
Making these simple lifestyle changes will not only help prevent type 2 diabetes but will contribute to an overall healthier lifestyle and will help prevent numerous other diseases that can be equally as, and sometimes more, dangerous for your health than diabetes. The major health benefits that result from diabetes prevention absolutely outweigh any negatives—mostly because maintaining a healthy lifestyle is an entirely positive health move! So eat healthy, get fit, and stay conscious of any health problems, and you hopefully won’t have to worry about diabetes at all.