10 Ways to Reduce the Risk of Diabetes
Know the 10 ways that can lower the risk of diabetes.
Type-2 diabetes is a common chronic illness which affects millions of people across the world. The increase in complications may lead to blindness, cardiovascular diseases and other serious health issues.
Prediabetes is a phase in which you may have high blood sugar levels but not as high to be considered diabetic. Majority of people with prediabetes develop type-2 diabetes.
There are various factors like lifestyle choice, genetics, past diseases and age that contribute to the progression of diabetes. Though we cannot control all the causes of diabetes, we can surely find ways to lower the risk of diabetes.
Here are ten ways you can reduce the risk of developing type-2 diabetes.
Drink Enough Water
Water is an essential part of a healthy lifestyle. You can increase your water intake if you think it's not enough. It cuts down your consumption of other sugary drinks with preservatives and questionable ingredients.
According to the US NIH, consumption of sodas and punches is associated with increase in risk of type-2 diabetes and LADA, type-1 diabetes which mainly affects people over the age of 18.
On the other hand, increase in water intake leads to optimal blood sugar levels and improved insulin response. In a study under NIH, people were found to have reduced insulin resistance and better fasting blood sugar tests by replacing sweetened drinks with water.
Physical activity has shown to lower the risk of diabetes because regular exercise increases the insulin sensitivity of cells thus reducing the insulin requirements.
According to the US NIH, medium-intensity and high-intensity exercises reduced the risk of diabetes by 51 percent and 85 percent in people respectively. Therefore you can include aerobic exercises, weight training and high intensity exercises that you can follow in the long term.
Smoking has been a contributing factor and cause of several serious issues like heart diseases, lung cancer, breast cancer, prostate and other digestive tract cancers. Research has linked smoking and exposure to second hand smoking with type-2 diabetes as well.
According to the NIH, analysis of several studies proved that smoking increases the risk of type-2 diabetes by 40 percent in regular smokers and by 61 percent in people who smoked more than 20 cigarettes a day.
Maintain Right Portion-Size
Though it is advisable to follow a low-carb diet to avoid the risk of diabetes, if people are not able to do so, they should definitely maintain their portion size. According to NIH, too much food at one go increases the blood sugar levels and insulin, thus increasing the risk of diabetes.
Studies under the US NIH found that prediabetic men maintaining their portion sizes reduced their risk of diabetes by 40 percent than men who made no lifestyle changes. So, make sure you consult your doctor on your eating habits and change it for your overall health.
Lose the Extra Kilos
According to the NIH, people with more visceral fat are at increased risk of type-2 diabetes due to inflammation and high insulin resistance.
Another study by the NIH showed that for every kilogram of weight lost, you lower your risk of diabetes by 16 percent. Obese people who lowered their risk of diabetes by reducing their weight increased it when they regained the lost weight.
You can include Mediterranean, vegetarian, paleo or low-carb diet to lose those extra kilos and maintain it in the longer run.
Eat High-Fiber Foods
High fiber diet has proved to be beneficial for gut health as well as in weight management. Studies under the NIH have shown that high-fiber diet reduces the risk of diabetes in prediabetic, older and obese people who are at a higher risk in general.
There are two types of fiber food- soluble and insoluble and the insoluble fiber has shown to maintain the blood sugar levels and reduce the risk of diabetes. Unprocessed plant-based foods are high in fiber.
Include Herbs in Your Diet
Herbs are an essential part of the Indian diet. Herbs have also proven to maintain the blood sugar levels and increase insulin sensitivity.
According to the NIH, curcumin in turmeric reduces the progression of diabetes, insulin resistance and inflammatory markers in prediabetic people.
Berberine found in various spices has blood-sugar-lowering property and also keeps inflammation, high cholesterol and heart diseases at bay.
Increase Vitamin-D Intake
Vitamin D is believed to keep the blood sugar levels under control. According to PubMed Central, people with high levels of vitamin D were 43 percent less likely to suffer from type-2 diabetes.
Children who took their vitamin D supplements regularly were at a reduced risk of type-1 diabetes. Vitamin D improves the functioning of the insulin producing cells, normalizes the blood sugar levels and keeps diabetes at bay.
Cut Down on Processed Foods
If you can cut down on the consumption of processed foods, it can lower your risk of diabetes, obesity and cardiovascular diseases as well. According to the US NIH, cutting down on packages foods that contain sugars, preservatives and processed grains can reduce the risk of diabetes significantly.
Processed food in regular diet can increase the risk of diabetes by 30 percent. So, replace these processed foods with whole foods like nuts, fruits, vegetables and other plant based diets.
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Lower Consumption of Sugars & Refined Carbs
Sugary and refined carbs foods contain simple sugars that can be easily broken down by the body and converted into smaller sugar molecules that are easily absorbed in the blood stream, increasing the blood sugar levels.
These sugar and refined carbs increase the risk of type-2 diabetes and it is advisable to avoid them at all costs. Studies have shown that people consuming fast-digesting carbs are 40 percent more likely to suffer from diabetes. So, make smart choices that are beneficial in the longer run.
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