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Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Insights on Good Life Practices

A little while back a reader of mine, Patricia from Illinois, asked if she could share an article about a subject very dear to her. It is on the topic of Type 2 Diabetes. Patricia feels it is very important to get the word out about proper diet and exercise to help or maybe even prevent type 2 diabetes, and it is never too early to start. Thanks Patricia for sharing some insight.

Type 2 diabetes is among the most common form of diabetes. Millions of Americans have been told they have diabetes type 2, and many more don't even suspect that they are at high risk.

Some groups have a higher risk for developing diabetes type 2 than others. Type 2 diabetes is much more common in African Americans, Latinos, Native Americans, and Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians along with other Pacific Islanders, and older people.

With type 2 diabetes, either your body will not produce enough insulin or the cells ignore the insulin. Insulin is essential for your body to be able to use glucose for energy. After you eat food, the entire body breaks down the sugars and starches into glucose, which is the basic fuel for any cells in your body. Insulin takes the sugar from blood to the cells. When glucose generates in your blood rather then going into cells, it can lead to diabetic complications.

There is the capability to increase and protect one's quality of life. With proper nutrition, exercise and practicing good life choices (like not smoking), you can actually feel better, stronger, healthier, and decrease your risk of diseases including cancer, diabetes, coronary disease and stroke.

What exactly is Healthy Weight?

There's a good way to find if your current weight puts you in danger of developing serious diseases. Check out and take the Body Mass Index (BMI) test. The final results will help you decide if you need to give consideration to your weight.

The Better You Eat, Better Your Experience

Here are a few basic guidelines to help you and your family make healthier food decisions.

* Eat numerous fruit and veggies.
* Choose whole grain foods over processed grain products. (Try brown rice as a substitute for white. Substitute whole wheat bread for white.)
* Eat fish 2 about 3 times per week.
* Select leaner cuts of meat like the ones that end in "loin."
* Remove the skin from poultry and turkey.
* Eat low fat dairy
* Drink water and calorie-free non-carbonated drinks.
* Use liquid oils for cooking as an alternative to solid fats.
* Minimize junk food like chips, cookies, cakes, and regular frozen goodies.(Hunt for baked chips and reduced calorie snacks. Or have some fruit instead.)
* Be careful about your serving sizes. Even a lot of "healthy" food could potentially cause an increase in weight.


* Compare labels of similar foods, and then choose the one with smaller amounts of saturated fat, cholesterol and sodium.
* Adults should eat under 2400 mg. of sodium daily. For people with high blood pressure, you must aim for even less.
* Try adding spices and herbs as part of your cooking to take the place of salt for enhancing flavor.

A Bit of Exercise Goes a Long Way

Anything that gets you up and moving will work for you. Some advantages of exercise;

* Decrease your risk of developing type 2 diabetes
* Reduce your risk of coronary disease and stroke. Lower blood pressure and cholesterol
* Reduce blood glucose (sugar) levels in case you have diabetes, which could lessen your risk of developing diabetes-related complications
* Alleviate tension
* Allow you to slim down
* Provide you with more energy
* Allow you to sleep better
* Build stronger bones and muscle mass

It’s not necessary to go to a gym, play sports, or use fancy equipment; just taking a walk reaps many benefits. Certainly, you must consult your physician prior to starting any exercise routine, but especially when you have diabetes.

Maintaining a healthy diet and staying active are even more important if you have diabetes. Well-balanced meals may help keep your glucose (sugar) level stay as close to normal as possible. Being active also helps you reduce your blood glucose. If you increase your physical activity levels, you might be able to take less insulin or diabetes pills. If you're very inactive, have heart disease, or maybe a history of foot ulcers, talk to your doctor about safe exercise for you.

Check your blood glucose before exercising. If it's under 100 mg/dl, eat some fruit, crackers or drink a glass of milk or juice. Check it again after exercising to know how your blood glucose reacts to exercise. Bring a snack if you will be active for some hour.

Putting some of these ideas into practice today, may increase your probability of a longer, healthier, and happier life.

About the writer -Patricia Harris writes for the Diabetic Menu blog, which is her personal hobby web log centered on ways to eat healthy, and to avoid or manage diabetes.

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The Activity Mom said...

I just got a "Featured on The Activity Mom" button. Awhile ago I featured your fork painting idea. If you want a button, come on over and grab the code.
Either way, thanks for your great posts and inspiration!

Ritu said...

Congratulations on having one of the most sophisticated blogs Ive come across in some time! Its just incredible how much you can take away from something simply because of how visually beautiful it is. This is definitely a must-see blog!

Thanks for writing!

I am definitely going to come around very often.

Ritu Mathur