India has the dubious distinction of being the diabetes capital of the world! What’s even more alarming is the lack of awareness. A study conducted in May 2019 reveals that 47% of diabetics in India don’t even know that they have diabetes. What’s more? Only 24% of diabetic patients manage their diabetes and keep it under control. All these show our apathy – individual as well as collective – towards a disease that can wreak havoc if not controlled!
Let’s take a look at the things including diet, exercise and the ideal routine a diabetic should follow to keep the disease under control.
What to eat:
Eating right is extremely crucial to keep diabetes under control. A diabetes diet should be high on fibre content and low on the Glycemic Index level. Here is what a diabetic person should eat:
- Beverages: Milk without fat & cream, buttermilk, green tea without sugar. Milk contains carbohydrates and proteins and helps control blood sugar levels.
- Whole grains, oats, channa, atta, millets and other high-fibre foods.
- Vegetables like peas, beans, broccoli, spinach and other leafy vegetables are high on fibre.
- Pulses and legumes with husk and sprouts.
- Fish, nuts, flax seeds, and canola oil. They are abundant sources of Omega 3.
- Fruits like apple, papaya, orange, pear, jamun and guava are fruits high on fibre. On the other hand, mangoes, bananas, and grapes contain high sugar content and should be consumed less often & in moderation.
Need to exercise:
Exercise helps in controlling blood sugar levels, increases energy levels, improves heart health and promotes emotional well-being. It is highly advisable for a diabetic patient to work out daily. The ideal forms of exercise recommended for a diabetic person are:
- Brisk walking
- Flexibility exercises such as stretching and yoga
A diabetic person should at least include 45-60 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity every day. Make sure that you don’t stop exercising for more than two days in a row.
- Maintain a sleep pattern: It’s not advisable for a diabetic patient to stay awake till late in the night. Go to bed early and rise early.
- Say no to Alcohol: It’s better to avoid alcohol. If it’s not possible, seek a doctor’s advice. Make sure that you don’t drink alcohol on an empty stomach.
- Regular Medication: Ensure a consistent & timely medication routine and do not miss out on medicines.
With proper medication, opting to undergo regular check-ups and living a well-balanced life, we can beat diabetes.
Remember, there are millions of people across the world who lead a happy and healthy life despite being a diabetic. All you need to do is to stick to your diet, medication, exercise, and regular check-ups.