World Diabetes Day is November 14, 2017, and this year’s theme is Women and Diabetes—Our Right to a Healthy Future. Globally, 1 in 10 women have diabetes, and 1 in 7 pregnancy is affected by gestational diabetes. Diabetes is the cause of death for over 2 million women every year, and can also result in kidney damage, blindness, heart disease, amputation, and other serious complications.
The International Diabetes Federation reports that up to 95% of cases of Type 2 Diabetes are preventable via an active, healthy lifestyle. The Pure Vibe Lifestyle supports these prevention strategies, including daily physical exercise, quality sleep, quality water, and a plant-based diet. Pure Vibe Owner Dominica Bay is deeply committed to diabetes care and prevention, her Great Aunt Nanette having lost her leg to diabetes due to complications while on duty during WWII and brother Johnny being diagnosed with Type 1 Juvenile Diabetes at age 8. Type 1 Diabetes is genetic however Type 2 Diabetes is typically triggered by poor lifestyle choices, which results in insulin resistance and accounts for 95 percent of all diagnosed cases of diabetes in adults.
Top 10 Ways to Prevent Type 2 Diabetes
1.Cut the Carbs
Type 2 Diabetes is all about managing healthy blood sugar levels, and nothing sends these levels out of control more than carbohydrates. Carbs—such as processed foods, white bread, white pasta, cookies, and sweats—are simple sugars, which are quickly digested, and flood into the blood stream. Replace these carbs with healthier choices such as whole fruits, vegetables, legumes and beans.
One of the best ways to manage blood sugar levels is daily exercise, and sticking to a regular exercise program as your “forever lifestyle.” Specific benefits come from aerobic exercise, strength training, and HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training), and these 3 aspects are combined in our Pure Vibe Fitness Classes. WBV is also an excellent way to increase circulation to the extremities, reducing numbness, pain and the risk for amputation. Our wide range of classes, times, and trainers means there’s a class waiting for you.
3. Drink Water
Don’t drink your calories, and especially don’t drink sugary sodas or heavily sweetened juices, smoothies, coffees, or alcohol. Beverages with a high sugar content flood your blood stream with simple sugars. Instead, choose quality filtered or spring water, and drink this throughout the day. Cold pressed vegetable & fruit juices, without added sugar can give you the same energy boost you may be looking for in sodas.
4. Maintain a Healthy Weight
Not everyone with Type 2 Diabetes or pre-diabetes is overweight, but majority are. This is often due to years of blood sugar levels being too high, and the body’s response of storing that excess blood sugar as fat, especially in the mid-section of the waist of abdomen. This extra fat adds its own complication to your body’s natural hormone levels, which impacts insulin sensitivity, which over time can contribute to diabetes. *Be sure to book your monthly BCA Check In’s to stay accountable and learn ways that will help you to lose any excess weight.
5. Eat Smaller Meals
Eating large meals can lead to over-consumption, which leads to excess blood sugar and insulin problems. A better plan is to eat smaller meals, and supplement with healthy fiber/protein rich snacks throughout the day. This “small and often” scenario more naturally maintains steady blood sugar levels.
“Sitting has become the new smoking,” with health, advocates recommend walking daily. If your job requires you to sit for extended periods of time invest in a standing desk and walk for a few minutes every hour. Walk during your lunch or breaks, park a little farther away, and meet friends for a walk instead of a coffee date. Walking is free, requires no special equipment, and provides an excellent method of leveling blood sugar levels via activity.
7. Fiber is your Friend
Increase your daily fiber intake via eating more whole fruits, vegetables, beans, nuts and seeds. Both soluble and insoluble sources of fiber have been shown to improve blood sugar levels in those with diabetes, mostly via slowing down the rate that your body digests food and releases sugars into the blood stream. Aim for 30 grams or more of fiber daily. Fiber also makes you feel full sooner and for longer, and is vital for gut health.
8. Vitamin D
Recent research shows strong links between optimized Vitamin D levels and lower instances of both Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes. Consult with your health professional to assess your current blood levels of Vitamin D, and how to optimize these via sun exposure and/or supplementation.
Quality sleep is extremely important for all aspects of health, and especially for diabetes prevention and management. Some experts think a chronic lack of sleep contributes to diabetes, and others feel that diabetes contributes to poor sleep. Either way, restful sleep is vital—aim for 8-9 hours of quality sleep a night. Develop destressing habits, and a restful routine around sleep, such as a warm bath with Epsom salts, meditation, and “no technology” for an hour before bed.
10. Minimize Stress
Stress can wreak havoc throughout the body, causing stress hormones to be released, cascading through various body systems. This response may be caused by physical stress—like illness, pain, infection, injury, and trauma—or by mental stress—such as fear, panic, anxiety, anger, or excitement. Stress hormones cause an increase in sugar to be released from the liver into the bloodstream, which can cause problems with diabetes. Minimizing stress can help keep these hormone levels in check, minimizing the negative effects.