Nowadays, there’s a massive amount of information about diabetes just a simple click away, but there is certain information you should only obtain from a reliable OB/GYN. First of all, we have to understand there are preventive measures women can take in order to reduce their risk of getting this disease. According to a Harvard School of Public Health publication, 90% of Type 2 diabetes cases in women can be attributed to five factors: excessive weight, lack of exercise, an unhealthy diet, smoking, and abstaining from alcohol (yes, you read it right). Making small changes in your lifestyle can lower your risk substantially. Here are some changes we recommend:
- Watch Your Weight.
Losing even 10 pounds can significantly minimize your risk. Keep in mind that being overweight is the most common cause behind Type 2 diabetes. So let’s get moving! Controlling what you eat is never enough when it comes to a healthy lifestyle, your diet should always be supplemented by an exercise routine that is just right for you and your physical condition.
- Pick the Right Foods.
The American Diabetes Association states that the right meal plan can, and will, help you improve your blood glucose levels and blood pressure, and will help keep your cholesterol numbers under control. Also, did you know that a higher intake of whole grains can protect you against diabetes?
- Say Goodbye to Sugary Drinks.
These types of beverages have a high glycemic load, which will eventually make you gain weight a lot faster and will instantly increase your blood glucose levels. So, what to drink instead? Well, water is and will always be the perfect choice. You can also go for the occasional cup of tea and coffee (as long as you don’t fill them up with sugar and cream).
- Get to Know Your Fats.
There are two types of fats: the good ones and the bad ones. The good ones, such as polyunsaturated fats, can be found in nuts, seeds, and vegetable oils (avocado is a great choice). On the other hand, beware of trans fats, which are the ones that increase your risk of heart disease.
- Quit Smoking.
No need to tell you the long list of risks you face when you become a heavy smoker. The risk of getting diabetes increases by up to 50% when you have this unhealthy habit, and if you are already at risk for diabetes, your chances increase even more.
- A Glass of Wine a Day Keeps the Doctor Away.
It’s true! In studies conducted by Harvard School of Public Health, moderate alcohol consumption decreased heart disease risk in study participants. With a glass a day (one for women, two for men) your insulin efficiency gets better. But don’t forget, that moderate consumptions is the key or it could become detrimental to your health.
As you can see, the key to a healthy lifestyle and a consistent diabetes prevention strategy is nothing less than a balanced diet, constantly monitoring your weight, and a healthy exercise routine. Remember to always see a specialist before you make any decisions that could affect your health.