Type 2 diabetes occurs when the pancreas produces less insulin than the body needs, and the cells cease to respond to insulin. This means that your blood glucose levels keep rising. If you do not treat type 2 diabetes, high blood sugar levels in your blood can seriously damage your eyes, heart, and feet. It can also cause other health problems like heart disease, kidney disease, and stroke.
Prediabetes is when your blood sugar levels are higher than normal but not high enough to be called diabetes. Prediabetes is still serious as it raises your likelihood of developing type 2 diabetes. The good news is if prediabetes is taken seriously, it can be reversed. Consider these tips for preventing type 2 diabetes.
Control your weight:
If you eat more calories than your body needs, the calories get stored as body fat, which can cause weight gain. Body fat, particularly around the stomach area, has been strongly linked to insulin resistance and developing type 2 diabetes. Being obese makes you 20 to 40 times more likely to develop diabetes than someone with a healthy weight.
Choose high fibre carbs:
Whole-grain carbohydrate sources have been linked to reducing the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Healthy sources of high fibre carbs are fruits and vegetables, pulses such as beans and lentils, and dairy products like unsweetened yoghurt and milk. Having more fibre in your diet also lowers the risk of other serious conditions such as obesity, heart disease, and a certain type of cancer.
Cut down on red and processed meat products:
Red and processed meats like bacon, ham, sausages, pork, and beef are all associated with an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Consuming a lot of these meats has also been linked to developing heart problems and certain types of cancer. Choose fish, nuts, poultry, tofu, and beans instead.
Exercise is part of any healthy lifestyle. It is recommended to get at least 30 minutes of activity, 5 days a week. If you have not been active for some time, try starting out slow and building your fitness up. It doesn’t need to be complicated. Pick whatever movement makes you feel good, whether it is walking and listening to a podcast, taking a dance class, swimming, or going for a bike ride. An active lifestyle and healthy diet could prevent prediabetes from developing into type 2 diabetes.
Current Studies to advance knowledge:
Do you have raised blood sugars? We are currently evaluating the effect of a fibre supplement on long-term glucose control in those with pre-diabetes and are looking for volunteers.
Click here to learn more about our Pre-diabetes study.
Do you experience high blood glucose levels, cholesterol, and blood pressure, or have a high waist circumference? We are evaluating the effect of a probiotic on insulin resistance in those with Metabolic Syndrome.
Click here to learn more about our Metabolic syndrome study.