A recommendation from the American Diabetes Association says all adults aged forty-five or older should have a blood glucose screening every year, though this may need to be done more frequently if an individual has additional risk factors for developing prediabetes or diabetes.
Getting diagnosed with prediabetes can be quite frightening,but rather than accept the inevitability of the condition progressing to full-blown diabetes, it is important to view this news as a wake-up call.
In fact, catching the problem while it is still in this phase can be a blessing because it gives patients the time to make important changes.
5 Ways to Treat Prediabetes Naturally
Several lifestyle changes have been proven to be effective at stopping the progression of prediabetes to diabetes. Get to know them now.
1. Increase the Amount of Exercise
It is vital for individuals to work with a doctor when they start to increase the amount of exercise they get. This is particularly true if it has been quite a while since they last worked out.
Doctors can advise patients of any limitations they may have and provide ideas for how to start out. Moving more is an important part of preventing diabetes because it can decrease body fat while also lowering blood glucose levels.
Ideally, anyone with prediabetes will aim for physical activity five times a week for thirty minutes. It is especially important for children who have been diagnosed with prediabetes to get at least one hour of physical activity a day.
2. Lose Excess Weight
If an individual wants to prevent full-blown diabetes from developing, it is essential for them to lose any excess weight they might have.
Keep in mind that losing just five to ten percent of one’s body weight can dramatically reduce the odds of prediabetes progressing to diabetes. This equates to only ten to twenty pounds if an individual weighs two hundred pounds.
To achieve and maintain weight loss, patients will need to make permanent changes in their eating habits and exercise routine. This can be incredibly difficult; however, it has many health benefits.
On top of reducing the risk of diabetes, losing weight can make individuals more energetic, give them a healthier heart, and more.
3. Maintain a Healthy Diet
It is crucial to maintain a healthy diet to lose weight and prevent diabetes. Adding fiber to one’s diet can be very helpful with this.Patients will want to eat at least three servings of vegetables today. Ideally,these veggies will be things such as leafy-greens and not ones considered starchy.
Patients can still enjoy fruit, but it should be consumed in moderation. Sticking to one to three servings a day is enough. Whenever possible, go with whole-grains over highly processed options.
Avoiding foods high in calories is vital. What individuals choose to snack on is particularly important. Things such as low-fat cheese or yogurt make much healthier choices than chips or other junk food. It may take some work, but it is possible to still have a varied and tasty diet that will help prevent diabetes from developing.
4. Take Recommended Medications
Individuals considered to be a high risk for developing type II diabetes may be prescribed medication. The only medication recommended by the American Diabetes Association is metformin, which works to reduce the amount of extra glucose the liver makes, effectively lowering the patient’s chances of developing diabetes.
In addition to this medication, a doctor may recommend drugs that aim to control high blood pressure and cholesterol, due to the known link between these things and developing type II diabetes.
Generally speaking, it is better to control prediabetes with diet and lifestyle changes. That being said, when recommended, it is important to take medication.
5. Lower High Blood Pressure
High blood pressure, also referred to as hypertension, has been linked to raising an individual’s risk of developing type II diabetes. How and why they link, however, is not yet fully understood.
Both of these conditions have similar risk factors, such as being overweight, a lack of exercise, and inflammation. Luckily, both of these conditions can also be treated in many of the same ways.
Diet and exercise are key. If necessary, to lower high blood pressure, doctors may recommend a separate medication. It is important for patients to control high blood pressure if they are at risk for diabetes, because the two conditions together can cause serious health issues, such as having a heart attack or stroke.