It’s nice to be thought of as sweet, but it’s not necessarily a good thing for your body. Chronically high or fluctuating blood sugar levels (a.k.a. blood glucose levels) indicate that your body isn’t properly absorbing sugar to use for energy. Over time, high blood glucose can damage your body and ultimately lead to diabetes. Here’s what to know and how WW can help.
Understanding blood sugar
Blood sugar levels are one of the most important markers for long-term health, and one of the most overlooked. Many people don’t realise something’s wrong until their blood sugar has been elevated for a long time. Early symptoms you might notice are fatigue, slow-to-heal wounds, thirst, and frequent urination. Over time, chronic high blood sugar can cause damage to your eyes, heart, blood vessels, nerves, kidneys, teeth and gums, and skin and feet. The higher your blood sugar, the greater your risk of developing diabetic heart disease and having more severe heart disease at a younger age. But there’s good news: Making lifestyle changes and keeping your blood sugar in an optimal range can help prevent or delay these complications. Studies have found that managing weight, getting regular exercise, working with your doctor, and having a healthy lifestyle can make living with diabetes easier.
Eating well with diabetes
With WW, no foods are off limits, even when you have diabetes. There are no “diabetes recipes” or special foods. Instead, the WW SmartPoints® system guides you to foods that are lower in sugar and higher in protein. For better blood-sugar control, carbohydrate consistency is key, so it’s best to aim for the same proportion of carbohydrate at each meal and snack. Use your plate as a guide: Allot half your plate to non-starchy veggies (like carrots, broccoli, or green beans); a quarter of your plate to protein; and a quarter to carbs (like rice, pasta, or potatoes). We recommend rounding out your meal with a small serving of fruit and skimmed milk for a variety of healthy choices and the optimal amount of carbs at a meal.
The benefits of moving more
Regular physical activity (with your doctor’s OK) is another essential part of managing diabetes. Remember that all movement matters and can help lower your blood sugar. Track your activity to see your progress and earn FitPoints® with WW digital tools.
The mindset-diabetes connection
Successfully managing diabetes isn’t only about what you eat and how you move. It’s also about being in the right frame of mind so you can embrace challenges, turn setbacks into learning opportunities, and stay focused on what really matters to reach your goals. Managing diabetes can be challenging and affect your life in many ways. A helpful mindset can foster well-being and help you along the way. Practicing self-compassion, learning mindfulness and meditation techniques—like the Headspace App!—and managing your stress are just a few examples of ways to shift toward a more helpful mindset. Combining these techniques with eating better and moving more, WW can help you improve your well-being and manage your blood sugar levels for the long run.
For more information and advice visit Diabetes Ireland