Do any of these apply to you?
- You’re overweight.
- You tend to consume a lot of sugary foods and beverages.
- You experienced gestational diabetes when you were pregnant … but it went away.
- You have a relative with type 2 diabetes.
- You have been diagnosed with prediabetes.
If so, you have a higher than average risk of developing the most common form of diabetes – type 2. With type 2 diabetes, the body either doesn’t produce enough insulin, or it resists insulin. That can lead to serious health conditions, such as cardiovascular disease, stroke, or eye and foot problems. Not only that, but the longer you have diabetes, the more likely you will develop health problems.
Which is why it’s important to ask your doctor this question…
How Can I Delay or Prevent Type 2 Diabetes?
There are several things you can do to prevent or at least delay the onset of type 2 diabetes:
- Lose excess weight and keep it off. People who are overweight or have obesity have added pressure on their body’s ability to use insulin to properly control blood sugar levels. Aim at losing five to seven percent of your starting weight. Example: If you weigh 250 pounds, your goal would be to lose approximately 13 to 18 pounds.
- Become more active. You should get at least 30 minutes of exercise or physical activity five days per week. But if you haven’t previously been active, talk with your doctor first about which activities are best for you. Start slowly and gradually work your way up to your personal goal.
- Eat and drink responsibly. Eat healthy foods with less fat in smaller portions to reduce the number of calories you consume and help yourself lose weight. Avoid sweetened beverages and drink water instead.
- Ask your doctor about Metformin. It’s a diabetes drug that helps prevent or delay type 2 diabetes. Your physician can tell you if Metformin is right for you based on your medical history.
If you had gestational diabetes during pregnancy and it went away after your baby was born, you may not be in the clear. You still have a higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes within five to 10 years. What’s more, you child may also be more likely to become obese and develop type 2 diabetes in the future.
To protect yourself and your child if you had gestational diabetes, get tested for diabetes regularly. If your blood glucose is normal, get tested every three years for type 2 diabetes. Also, be especially active, make healthy food choices, and maintain a healthy weight. Breastfeed to be sure your baby gets the proper amount of nutrients, and you burn calories.
In general, maintaining healthy diet and exercise habits are the best way to avoid type 2 diabetes, and save yourself a heap of health-related problems. However, if you are diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, you can count on Intercoastal Medical group to provide the best care possible.
For more information on how to prevent or delay type 2 diabetes, schedule an appointment with one of our doctors by calling Intercoastal Medical Group in Sarasota and Manatee County, Florida. You can also request an appointment online now.