Staying fit and healthy is essential for everyone’s general wellbeing but it is even more important that those with diabetes maintain a healthy lifestyle in order to stay on top of the condition. Managing diabetes may require you to make some significant lifestyle changes when it comes to diet, exercise and taking care of yourself, but with so many health trends and fads out there, you could be forgiven for not knowing where to start.
It is estimated that around 4.5 million people in the UK have diabetes. That’s a lot of people who need to take vital steps towards managing their condition. This is because, on average, those living with diabetes have shorter life expectancies. Statistics show that people with both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes are 34.4% more likely to die compared to those who don’t have the condition. Similarly, data from the NHS’ National Diabetes Audit shows that around 24,000 people with the disease die prematurely every year in the UK.
A diagnosis of diabetes is certain to have an emotional impact, not only on you, but also on those around you. Managing diabetes might seem like a big challenge, but by making the right lifestyle changes and taking the steps you need to protect both yourself and your loved ones, you can eliminate much of the worry and grow with confidence and re-assurance that you can lead as healthy and normal life as possible.
Managing diabetes is all about looking after yourself. The helpful tips below cover some basic lifestyle factors to bear in mind to help you do just that. Using the guidelines put together by the National Institute for Healthcare Excellence (NICE), we’ve assembled this advice to assist you in managing your diabetes.
1) Keep on Top of Your Blood Sugar Levels
One of the most important habits you will have to learn to factor into your day to day life when managing diabetes is regularly monitoring your blood sugar levels. First of all, you should inform yourself about the basics of blood glucose levels. This might sound daunting, but if you speak with your GP and read up on helpful website such as diabetes.co.uk, you will probably be surprised by how straightforward this whole process can be.
Failing to keep on top of your blood sugar levels can lead to a condition known as Hypoglycaemia. This occurs when blood glucose levels drop to lows of 4.4 mmol/l. In severe cases, hypoglycaemia can lead to symptoms such as convulsions, fits, loss of consciousness and diabetic coma.
As hypoglycaemia restricts brain fuel, the most serious cases can result in functional brain failure. Failure to properly monitor blood sugar levels at least two hours before driving could lead to blurred vision or loss of consciousness behind the wheel, and a number of road accidents occur every year as a result of hypoglycaemia.Regularly checking blood sugar levels is an essential part of managing diabetes for many people with the condition. If you were to suffer an attack of hypoglycaemia it could lead to you missing out on work which may have a serious financial impact on you and your family.
At the moment, statutory sick pay covers just £89.35 per week for up to 28 weeks. When you sign up for ESMI sick pay insurance you can relax in the knowledge that, were any hypoglycaemia-related illnesses or injuries to affect your ability to go to work, you would be able to receive up to £2,000 every month for six months. This is just one form of insurance from ESMI you can rely on to ensure that your family remains financially secure.
2) Eat a Healthy, Balance Diet
In order to correctly manage your diabetes, it is vital to eat a nutritionally balanced diet. This includes eating regular meals with small portions which are low in fat, sugar and salt. You should aim to up your intake of fibre by eating plenty of wholegrain, fruits and vegetables. In their guide to eating with diabetes, Diabetes UK recommends eating a wide array of colours with each meal to get as diverse a selection of vitamins and minerals as possible.
You can find out more about how to eat a healthy diet by using the many resources offered by the NHS. The NHS Livewell Guide includes calorie intake calculators, information about different food types and a range of recipes you can start to cook for yourself and your family.
By sticking to a healthy, balanced diet which has been optimised to help you manage your diabetes, you are securing your future. Watching what you eat means you can greatly reduce your risk of suffering health complications as a result of your diabetes.
3) Exercise Regularly
Physical exercise is a vital part of the process of managing diabetes. Alongside healthy eating, regular exercise plays a vital role in your treatment plan. This is because keeping fit and active will enable you to keep on top of your condition and maintain your blood sugar levels.
There are many benefits to being physically active including losing and maintaining a healthy weight. Exercise also increases the amount of glucose used by the muscles for energy which, in turn, lowers the levels of glucose in the bloodstream. As physical exertion encourages the body to use its insulin more efficiently, people with diabetes may experience a reduction in the amount of insulin they need to take once they start working out.
Together with your healthcare team, you should come up with a healthy lifestyle plan that involves plenty of healthy eating and regular exercise. Changing your lifestyle and habits in this way is a key way to help prolong the length of your life.
4) Get the Support You Need
Research into diabetes by Diabetes UK has found that the life expectancy of someone with type 2 diabetes is likely to be shortened by, on average, around 10 years. Many different factors contribute to the statistics and and each individual’s circumstances have an impact on their life expectancy. These factors can include how early their diabetes was diagnosed, the progress of complications connected to the condition, whether they have any other existing conditions and how effectively they manage their diabetes.
The shorter lifespan associated with both type 1 and 2 diabetes is a major reason to consider getting insured with ESMI. Life insurance can replace your income so that your family’s everyday expenses would be covered after you’ve gone. This will give your loved ones the security and time needed to make plans for their own futures.
At ESMI we know that managing diabetes and putting these changes into action can be a long and challenging process. After all, transforming your daily routine, the way you eat and your level of physical activity is a huge step.
This is why you should reach out and make the most of the support that’s out there to help you make that change. The more you know and the more help you have, the better your chances of managing diabetes effectively will be. Campaigns such as Diabetes Awareness Week aim to do just that and take place annually. It’s important to remember that there are plenty of places to turn and lots of organisations which are constantly making discoveries and coming up with ways to make life easier for people with diabetes.
Protection insurance is a vital step in safeguarding the future of your loved ones and delivering you peace of mind. You can rest safe in the knowledge that you are providing a financially secure future for your family, if the worst was to happen.
Our comprehensive protection insurance plans are guaranteed-acceptance. This means that we will ALWAYS accept you regardless of any pre-existing medical conditions you may have, including diabetes.
All of our policies are clear-cut and straightforward and come with a 30-day money back guarantee. Get in touch today to find out more about the services we can offer you.
Alternatively, if you’re ready to go ahead, you can apply here.