Do you know someone with diabetes? Have you ever wondered what causes it or if there are ways to prevent it? In fact, there are a variety of risk factors linked to the development of diabetes, including factors outside of our own control (like age, gender, and family history), as well as lifestyle factors we can control like diet and exercise.
In the spirit of Canadian Diabetes Awareness Month this November, here are 5 lifestyle tips to help lower your risk of diabetes:
1. Skip the Sugar Rush
Foods high in sugar cause a spike in blood sugar levels, especially in more refined forms like candies, pastries and juices. If you’re at risk for diabetes, limiting your intake of high carbohydrate foods, especially highly processed packaged foods, is a good idea. If you have a sweet tooth, try switching out desserts for high fibre fruit like berries.
2. It’s Fibre Time
Fibre is a very important nutrient when it comes to diabetes management and prevention. It not only helps with weight management, but also offers benefits for heart health and blood sugar control. Enjoy a variety of fibre-rich foods, like vegetables, legumes (like beans, lentils and pulses), and nuts and seeds, and reap the benefits of fibre!
3. Make Time for Movement
Incorporating movement into our daily lives can help lower our risk of diabetes by improving heart health, and building our muscles. Including movement can also help us to reach and maintain a healthy weight. Try to carve out 20 to 30 minutes each day to get active. Even doing chores around the house, spending some time in the garden, or taking a walk in the neighbourhood count towards this goal!
4. Talk to an Expert
If you are at risk for pre-diabetes or diabetes, now is the time to take action. Dietary changes can reverse the course of insulin resistance and prevent the need for medication down the line. A Registered Dietitian can help you adapt your diet to keep your blood sugar levels healthy, and help you feel your best.
5. Be Kind to Your Mind
Stress and anxiety can impact our ability to take care of our health, whether it’s for diabetes or any other medical reason. Recharge by spending time with family and friends, practicing relaxation exercises like yoga and meditation, or simply doing something you enjoy. Self-care is key to manage stress and will give you a boost to keep up with your healthy habits like eating well and being physically active.
Have any of these tips resonated with you? Are you interested in more tips for diabetes prevention?
Sign up for our 30-Day Sugar Fix Challenge we’ve designed for Diabetes Awareness Month! You’ll be paired with a Registered Dietitian who will support you and personalize the challenge to your needs and lifestyle. Are you ready to lower your risk of diabetes? Sign up today!