Unlike Type 1 diabetes, prediabetes and Type 2 diabetes can be prevented or delayed if you modify your lifestyle. Your primary care provider can assess your risk based on your symptoms and health background. If you are diagnosed or found to be high risk for developing prediabetes, your provider will recommend healthy lifestyle modifications you can make to prevent the onset of Type 2 diabetes.
Below is a list of fun, smart ways to help prevent the onset of prediabetes and Type 2 diabetes.
1. Eat smart
By controlling portion sizes, you can eat your way to better health. Instead of using a dinner plate, try using a salad or luncheon plate; this will help make less food look like more. In addition, you can use child-size utensils to help take smaller bites and slow your eating. It takes about 20 minutes for your stomach to signal your brain that you are full. Eating slower will help stop you from overeating.
2. Get moving
Being active each day will help you stay at a healthy weight and help prevent Type 2 diabetes. You can get creative, too! Try taking the stairs at work, park further from the door, take a walk with a friend to catch up instead of over the phone or dance to music with your kids or while you do housework. The possibilities are endless.
3. Make good choices and strive for balance
Increase your vegetable intake and reduce fatty, salty and high-calorie foods. Keep fruits and vegetables around for a healthy snack. Assess each meal to see if it includes a balance of starchy carbs + fruit or vegetables + protein from fish/poultry/seafood, beans, or dairy.
4. Cook intelligently
Cook with less butter and oil. Avoid snacking while making a meal. Rather than using salt, try incorporating different herbs and spices while you cook for a change of pace.
5. Drink up
Increase your water intake and limit sugary drinks such as soda, sports drinks and whole milk.
6. Take a breather
Lastly, don’t forget to relax. Pamper yourself by reading a book, taking a long bath or listening to your favorite music.
Schedule an appointment with a primary care provider to assess your risk of diabetes and what changes you can make to lower your risk.