Steps you can take
to prevent diabetes
Lifestyle is one of the most important factors in the development of type 2 diabetes. A few simple changes can help you greatly reduce your risk of developing diabetes.
Novant Health has a team of board-certified physicians who have decades of combined experience with diabetes and treatment. Below are a few steps you can take to help prevent diabetes.
Weight management - People who are able to maintain a healthy weight or who can lose some of their extra pounds can substantially lower their risk of diabetes. While there are no clear-cut reasons overweight people are at an increased risk, it is known that losing some weight helps control that risk. But it is not just the extra pounds that count. Another factor is what part of your body carries those extra pounds. People who are heavier around their belly and upper body have more of a risk than those who carry the weight in their thighs.
Stay active - Those who exercise regularly benefit more because exercise also helps with weight control. Lack of exercise seems to be a major factor in the development of diabetes, and those who do exercise can decrease their risk tremendously. Any kind of activity will do, whether you are just walking around the block, dancing, gardening or participating in competitive sports – just start doing it regularly. Be sure to talk to your primary care physician before starting an exercise program.
Healthy diet - While there is little evidence that certain foods help cause diabetes, there are some foods that may help prevent it. A high-fiber diet including fruits, vegetables, beans and whole grains might reduce your risk for developing diabetes.
Get tested - In addition to prevention efforts, early detection is key to preventing other health complications that can arise due to diabetes. Symptoms can often go undetected when a person has pre-diabetes or is in early stages of the disease. In fact, experts estimate that about one in four people with diabetes are unaware they have the disease. Ask your primary care doctor to perform a blood sugar test to ensure that you do not have diabetes.