Receiving a prediabetes diagnosis can be a wake-up call, but it’s also an opportunity to take control of your health and prevent the progression to full-blown type 2 diabetes. The reason you have had this diagnosis will be that the blood sugar levels from your results are generally higher than what is classed as normal.
However, they aren’t high enough to warrant a diagnosis of diabetes. If you have found yourself being diagnosed with this, you don’t have to sit by and let it consume you. Instead, you can take the following steps that teach you to manage prediabetes effectively and reduce your risk of developing diabetes and experiencing related complications.
The first and most crucial step after a prediabetes diagnosis is to educate yourself about the condition. Understand what prediabetes means, the risk factors, and its potential consequences if left untreated. Knowledge is a powerful tool for managing your health.
Consult a Healthcare Professional
When you get the diagnosis of prediabetes, make another appointment with your doctor. They can not only perform a comprehensive assessment of your health, but they should provide personalized advice and monitor your progress. Continue to visit your healthcare provider regularly to monitor your prediabetes and overall health. These appointments allow for adjustments to your treatment plan, if necessary, and provide an opportunity to address any concerns.
Adopt a Healthy Diet
Making dietary changes is a cornerstone of prediabetes management. It’s a matter of bringing in more healthy foods and limiting your consumption of sugary food and those high in saturated fats. Controlling portion sizes and monitoring carbohydrate intake can also help stabilize blood sugar levels.
Regular Physical Activity
Doing regular physical activity is not only a great lifestyle choice, but it is also an effective way to improve insulin sensitivity and lower your blood sugar levels. Aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise per week, such as brisk walking, swimming, or cycling. Additionally, include strength training exercises at least two days a week to build muscle and enhance metabolism. Exercising can be a crucial way to manage your weight better. Losing even a modest amount of weight can significantly reduce your risk of progressing to diabetes. Consult with a healthcare provider to set realistic weight loss goals and develop a sustainable plan. They will be able to suggest exercises and diet changes you can make.
Monitor Blood Sugar
As your blood sugar levels play an important role, you must monitor this regularly. You can test your blood sugar levels using a HbA1c test. You want to track your progress and make necessary adjustments to your lifestyle and treatment plan. Self-monitoring can also motivate you to stay on track.
In some cases, healthcare providers may prescribe medication to help manage prediabetes. Metformin is a commonly prescribed medication that can do two things: improve insulin sensitivity and lower blood sugar levels. It is often recommended for individuals at higher risk of developing diabetes.
High stress levels can affect blood sugar control. Incorporate stress-reduction techniques such as meditation, deep breathing exercises, yoga, or mindfulness into your daily routine to promote overall well-being. Find what works for you.
Share your prediabetes diagnosis with your family and friends. Building a strong support system can help you stay motivated and accountable. Consider joining a support group or seeking out online communities of individuals dealing with prediabetes or diabetes.