March 22 Is National Diabetes Day. Here’s How To Reduce Your Risk Of Type 2 Diabetes
What Can I Do To Mitigate My Risk Of Developing Type 2 Diabetes?
- Understand Your Current Risk – First, you should consult your doctor to see if you are currently at risk of contracting prediabetes, and get an idea of your overall health. Just because you’re a nurse doesn’t mean you’re superhuman – you can get sick and be at risk for diseases too. So take the time to get yourself checked out, and understand your current risk factors.
- Eat Right – High-sodium, high-fat diets have been associated with type 2 diabetes. Eating plenty of fruits, vegetables, and high-fiber foods like oatmeal and other whole grains can help you reduce the amount of fat and sodium that you consume, and lower your risk of type 2 diabetes.
- Get Active – This doesn’t mean you have to go to some fancy exercise class or join a new gym. Being active can be as simple as walking. Walking alone can reduce your risk of developing diabetes, as well as a host of other inactivity-related diseases.
- Watch Your Weight – A few extra pounds won’t send you over the edge, but excess body fat is a large risk factor for diabetes, as it suppresses the body’s ability to process insulin.
- Reduce Your Alcohol Consumption – Okay, us nurses don’t usually get a chance to cut loose – but even when you do go out, try to limit your alcohol intake. Alcohol can lead to weight gain, higher blood pressure, and higher triglyceride levels – all issues that can affect your propensity for developing type 2 diabetes.
- Don’t Smoke – Nearly half a million nurses in the US are smokers. It’s very ironic – after all, we’ve seen first hand what smoking does to a person. Alongside lung damage, cancer, increased risks of stroke and heart attack, smoking doubles your chance of contracting diabetes. If you’re a smoker, try to quit this habit or at least start minimizing your smoking sessions extensively as a starting point.
Stay Informed, Stay Active, And Share Your Knowledge!
Maybe you’re not at risk of developing diabetes – but somebody you know is.
This National Diabetes Day, you should talk to them about their habits, their risks, and how they can reduce them. It may be a tough conversation, but it’s one worth having.
Everyone should know about the risk of type 2 diabetes – that’s what the ADA wants, and that is the exactly the reason behind why March 22 is such an important day.
So learn, share your knowledge, and spread it – it’s only through knowledge that we can defeat diabetes. For more information about diabetes, visit the ADA’s website today at Diabetes.org