Living With Diabetes – Proper Dental Care

September 6, 2012 by  
Filed under Living with Diabetes

If you’re living with diabetes, you likely know the importance of a healthy diet, a healthy weight, and controlling your blood sugar. These factors, along with many others, can maintain your health and ward off complications. Complications can include heart disease, stroke, organ damage and amputation. But these aren’t the only conditions you should worry about. Living with diabetes increases your risk of gum disease, thus it’s important to practice good dental hygiene.

Gum disease is an inflammatory condition that affects the gum tissue. Because you’re more prone to gum disease, brushing frequently throughout the day is a necessity. While someone without diabetes may brush three times a day, someone with diabetes may brush after every meal or snack. Flossing is also crucial to avoiding gum disease. This practice removes plague and other particles from around the gum line.

If you’re living with diabetes, never underestimate the importance of regular dental checkups. Even if you brush and floss multiple times during the day and avoid sugary foods, dental visits contribute to your oral health. Schedule checkups every six months – or as recommended by your dentist.

 

Living With Diabetes – Proper Dental Care

September 5, 2012 by  
Filed under Living with Diabetes

If you’re living with diabetes, you likely know the importance of a healthy diet, a healthy weight, and controlling your blood sugar. These factors, along with many others, can maintain your health and ward off complications. Complications can include heart disease, stroke, organ damage and amputation. But these aren’t the only conditions you should worry about. Living with diabetes increases your risk of gum disease, thus it’s important to practice good dental hygiene.

Gum disease is an inflammatory condition that affects the gum tissue. Because you’re more prone to gum disease, brushing frequently throughout the day is a necessity. While someone without diabetes may brush three times a day, someone with diabetes may brush after every meal or snack. Flossing is also crucial to avoiding gum disease. This practice removes plague and other particles from around the gum line.

If you’re living with diabetes, never underestimate the importance of regular dental checkups. Even if you brush and floss multiple times during the day and avoid sugary foods, dental visits contribute to your oral health. Schedule checkups every six months – or as recommended by your dentist.

 

Carbs and Your Diabetes

September 2, 2012 by  
Filed under Diets for Diabetes

If you are one of the many folks who are managing diabetes, you know that the worst food choices are the ones that are going to spike your blood sugar. Foods for diabetics that are high in carbohydrates don’t necessarily have to be avoided. However, you do have to make sure they are the “right” carbs. Complex carbohydrates are going to offer your body the essential vitamins and minerals it needs, along with the necessary fiber to keep it going.

White flour is one of the worst choices. There are many breads and muffins available today that are made with whole grain flours, that it is much easier to make better choices. White rice is also among the worst foods. Choose brown rice instead. If you are a cereal-eater in the morning, stay away from ones made with little whole grain. Typically, these are also the worst offenders with lots of sugar. Peruse the cereal aisle and you are bound to see more wholesome cereals boasting about the amount of whole grain their product contains. And there aren’t too many people around who don’t understand how bad French fries are for you. If you are living with diabetes, there are a couple options if you are ordering out. Order the baked potato or ask if they can make steak fries that are baked and not fried.

Whole grain goodness is easier than ever to find thanks to a greater understanding of our nutritional health. Take a moment to choose wisely when at the grocery store, and you will easily be able to substitute the worst choices in grains for the best!

 

Successful Diabetes Management Combines Both Physical and Emotional Wellness

When we talk about managing diabetes, the discussion is often centered around the physical toll the disease takes on the body.  But there is also an emotional impact as well, and diabetics should be constantly aware of how their condition affects their moods.

The science is irrefutable: diabetics are more likely to suffer from depression, anger, and anxiety if blood sugars are poorly controlled.  On one hand, escalating or mercurial blood sugars can adversely affect brain chemistry and trigger episodes of depression and anxiety.

At the same time, even when blood sugars are kept under control, diabetics may nonetheless feel depressed or angry given their lifestyle.  And it’s understandable: living with diabetes requires constant vigilance and, over time, can leave the diabetic exhausted and depressed.

At the end of the day, successful management of diabetes consists of both physical and mental wellness.  Diabetics need to keep the lines of communication open with their doctors and dieticians if they feel anxious or depressed, as these emotional conditions are inextricably linked to their physical well-being.

 

Diabetic Alert Dogs an Increasingly Popular Line of Defense in Managing Diabetes

July 31, 2012 by  
Filed under Living with Diabetes

A recent article in the New Yorker examined the incredible advancements humans have made in training dogs for all sorts of public safety or military measures. In the article, we learn how dogs are being deployed in Afghanistan to sniff out improvised explosive devices and how New York City policemen use them to catch would-be criminals or terrorists in subways and on the streets.

Now comes another encouraging development for individuals living with diabetes: diabetic alert dogs.

These dogs can, quite literally, smell if a diabetic’s blood sugars are low. More incredibly, the dogs can sense changes in blood sugars from as far away as five miles – or an hour or so before a meter detects it.

To say a dog’s sense of smell is amazing is an understatement: while the average human has five-million scent receptors, a dog has close to a quarter-million. As a result, when a diabetic’s blood sugars rise, they release a chemical that only dogs can detect. When this occurs, the dog is trained to paw at the owner to alert them to take insulin.

 

Living With Diabetes: Alcoholic Beverages

July 28, 2012 by  
Filed under Living with Diabetes

People living with diabetes have to keep a close eye on their health and diet. Diabetes is a condition in which the body has difficulty regulating blood sugar. Keeping this condition under control involves carefully monitoring your sugar intake. While you may adopt better eating habits and reduce your intake of candy and other sweets, living with diabetes also calls for limiting your alcohol intake.

It’s okay for people with diabetes to enjoy a drink here and there, but some alcoholic beverages have high sugar content. Consuming several of these beverages a day can negatively affect your blood glucose level and lead to complications.

To maintain your health when living with diabetes, it’s best to watch your intake of alcohol and consume no more than one glass of wine or beer a day. Better yet, you can go a step further and only drink alcoholic beverages that contain no sugar, such as whiskey.

 

Consistent Eating Habits and Managing Diabetes

June 18, 2012 by  
Filed under Managing Diabetes

Properly managing diabetes is key to maintaining your health. Even if your diabetes is under control, complications can occur down the road. These can include nerve damage, stroke, heart attack and coma. With diabetes, a healthy blood glucose level is crucial. There are several ways to maintain healthy levels, such as eating enough fiber, exercising and taking prescription medications. Additionally, managing diabetes necessitates consistent eating habits.

Someone without diabetes can skip meals or go hours between meals without serious consequences. However, it is vital that people living with diabetes eat throughout the day. This doesn’t suggest eating large meals or overindulging in food. A healthy eating plan includes five or six small meals a day. You might enjoy a moderate-size portion for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and then eat three healthy snacks in between meals. This is especially important when managing diabetes because skipping meals can increase your blood sugar, whereas well-spaced out meals and snacks helps maintain a healthy level.

 

Living with Diabetes

March 25, 2012 by  
Filed under Living with Diabetes

Diabetes is a condition that affects everyone from children right up to adults. It is referred as a chronic condition since a person who has it can go through many changes in their lives as it can affect their entire body. Over time, diabetes can cause blindness, stroke, and amputations among other things.
 
There are two types of diabetes; Juvenile or Type 1 diabetes and adult-onset diabetes also known as Type 2 diabetes. The more common form of diabetes is Type 2 and those who have this type of diabetes are faced many difficulties and complications to their liver, muscle and even fat cells. In the case of Type 1 diabetics, they are required to use insulin to be able to combat the effects of diabetes.
 
A simple blood sugar test can determine if you have diabetes or not. The doctor usually checks the level of your glucose to determine if you are diabetic. There are also telltale signs that one is diabetic as well. The symptoms of diabetes include an increase in thirst; feeling tired all the time, headaches, and weight loss and in some cases blurred vision and even dry mouth.
 
There is a treatment for diabetes and one can easily keep it under control if proper measures are taken. One must first keep their blood glucose in check all the time and one way to achieve this is by eating healthy foods for diabetics. One can also combat the symptoms of diabetes by keeping up with an exercise regimen and it would also help to keep their weight under control as well.
 
 

Medical Nutrition Therapy

February 22, 2012 by  
Filed under Diets for Diabetes

Once diagnosed with type 2 Diabetes, creating a healthy eating plan with a nutritionist is very important. Managing diabetes through diet, exercise and careful monitoring of your blood glucose levels, will allow you to live a long and healthy life.  Your nutritionist will be able to teach you what a diet for diabetics is and what it is not. Your new eating plan can be incorporated into your family’s eating plan and everyone will be eating healthier!

MNT or medical nutrition therapy is simply eating more nutritious foods, less processed foods all in more manageable amounts at appropriate times. This diet for diabetics is low in fat and calories and emphasizes fruits, vegetables and whole grains, which everyone should be eating.

Making these healthy choices will help keep your blood sugar levels in check and keep you from suffering more serious chronic developments such as kidney and heart damage.

Healthy carbohydrates, fiber rich foods and fish, which is great for your heart, are all foods that should be incorporated into your diet. Understanding good fats versus saturated fats and trans fats along with how to limit cholesterol is part of the knowledge that you and your family will gain.

All this creates a plan that should be manageable and make you much more healthy. It will be saving your life and potentially the lives of your family. With that in mind, you are sure to make it a success.

 

Managing a Teenager with Diabetes

February 19, 2012 by  
Filed under Living with Diabetes

Many teens believe they are invincible. This is why many of the warnings parents instill in them while they are children become a kind of white noise in their heads the moment they become teenagers and strive for their independence.

We warn them of the dangers of drugs, alcohol and cigarette smoke. We have discussions about healthy eating, exercise and the need to get plenty of sleep. We hope these lessons and values remain with them throughout their life. And, while, for the majority of kids they do, they all have to go through the teen years which for some, test a parent’s patience but for others can induce real fears.

A child with childhood diabetes spends their entire life watching their parents protect them, diligently testing their blood sugar, providing a healthy diet and giving them their diabetes medication. They understand only too well what it takes to manage their diabetes. So, it seems unacceptable that when they reach the teen years that this is something they begin to neglect.

It is not uncommon for teens to rebel against their treatment for diabetes. They may eat the wrong foods, become lax in monitoring their glucose levels and not report to you the results. This can be extremely scary. They understand that they are not like other teens, who can binge on junk food with no repercussions. Their neglectful behavior can be life-threatening; however, some teens are desperate to fit in, they don’t care of the cost.

It is highly recommended that you make sure your child, at a very young age, is in a support group with other children with Type 1 diabetes. There are camps they can attend where they can meet other children and know that they are not alone. If you notice severe withdrawal and a change in moods or habits, it is extremely urgent that you seek professional help.

 

Effective Diabetes Care Demands Actionable and Specific Guidelines from Your Doctor

February 10, 2012 by  
Filed under Managing Diabetes

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that close to 20 million people in the United States have diabetes. What’s worse, the group also claims that approximately seven million Americans have diabetes, but are unaware that they have it.

Needless to say, diabetes has reached epidemic proportions in the United States, underscoring how much more work we as a society need to do around diabetes prevention and treatment.

For those managing diabetes, they are invariably aware of what they should do to keep their blood sugars in check. But many times, proper diabetes care fails to provide simple, concise, and most importantly, actionable steps to effectively manage diabetes.

For example, take the need to exercise. Diabetics are told they should exercise, but a better question is how should they exercise? An effective regimen for a relatively fit diabetic can differ than that for an older, heavier individual; after all, excessive or overly strenuous exercise can cause a sudden drop in blood sugars.

So if you are trying manage your diabetes and need greater clarification around vague terms like “exercise more” or “eat better,” immediately ask your doctor for practical and tangible guidelines.

 

Diabetes Management is Truly a Team Effort Where Communication is Key

February 6, 2012 by  
Filed under Managing Diabetes

When managing diabetes, it is critical for people to realize that they are not fighting the disease alone. Each diabetic has a team that can support them, and keeping the lines of communication open across each individual is a key part for successful treatment.

The main player in managing diabetes, is, of course, the diabetic themselves. They have the ultimate responsibility to engage in healthy lifestyle choices to keep their blood sugars under control. But these choices can be made in tandem with an array of professionals, one of which is an endocrinologist, who specializes in diabetes care and is referred to the patient by their primary care physician.

Another important ally is your diabetes wellness team. This group is comprised of nurses and dieticians; the latter professional is extremely important in helping to develop and healthy diet regimen built on fresh fruits and vegetables. This team also provides important emotional support, helping diabetics fully understand the disease and addressing any issues that may arise.

There’s an old phrase, “no man is an island,” and nowhere is that more accurate than when managing diabetes. Diabetics can find comfort in knowing they are not alone.

 

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