Diabetes Awareness Week

Wednesday: Triangle of diabetes personal care plan

Achieving good blood glucose control is very important but does not come without difficulties as its based on successfully managing the three main areas in diabetes care: medications, diet and exercise.

This may seem uncomplicated; still, good results using this well-known treatment approach often gets missed along the way. Because of that we have to work together, throughout the process of integrated care between you and your health care professionals from primary or/and secondary care providers.

As we re-visit the triangle of diabetes personal care plan, it is only when these three things come together that you can achieve improved diabetes outcomes. Make sure your diet is balanced with your medication (insulin/oral meds) and you use exercise to manage glucose levels (doing all this while monitoring blood glucose).

Diet: Follow ‘Eat Well Plate’ for healthy balanced diet:

* Carbs (45-60%) include sugars, starches, and fiber. Carbohydrate counting can help you control your blood glucose levels because it affects your blood glucose more than other nutrients (fats and proteins). Focus on grains, vegetables with starches like potatoes, corn, parsnip, green peas and limit sweets, cookies, crisps.

* Fats (<20 %) limit unhealthy fats saturated, trans fats, like lard, gravies, hot dogs, sausage, processed foods and concentrate on mono & polyunsaturated, like avocadoes, olives, peanuts, nuts.

* Proteins (15-20%) meat doesn’t increase the glycemic index, like chicken, turkey, fish, but also plant based beans, peas, low fat cheese, eggs whites.

Exercise:  Aerobic type of exercise helps the body to use insulin, like: running, walking, walking football or swimming (*exercise can cause hypoglycaemia).

Medications: Compliance means following the recommendations of your team of healthcare professionals. These often include taking medications as well as making lifestyle changes such as quitting smoking, healthy eating, maintaining a healthy weight and getting the right kind of physical activity (some medication can cause hypoglycaemia).

Lee Wilkins

Author Lee Wilkins

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