Diabetes is one of the major chronic diseases of the world. At present, more than 300 million people suffer from diabetes and about 1.5 million people die every year due to diabetes. It is caused due to improper metabolism of insulin hormone, which results in high blood glucose levels in the body. Depending upon the causes, diabetes is classified into three types – Type 1, Type 2 and Gestational diabetes. In a diabetic patient, either the body fails to produce insulin (Type 1 diabetes) or utilize insulin (Type 2 diabetes) properly. Gestational diabetes is similar to Type 2 and is developed among pregnant women.
How to Lower Glucose Levels?
Lowering blood glucose levels is one of the most necessary steps in the treatment of diabetes, which can be achieved by giving external insulin in form of injections and changing lifestyle. Here are some tips on how to make the required changes in one’s lifestyle that will help in lowering blood glucose levels.
One of the most important and easy ways to lower blood sugar is regular exercise. There is no need to perform rigorous exercises. One can do simple exercises such as going for a walk, climbing stairs, gardening and participating in household work. Exercising 30 minutes a day will certainly help to manage glucose levels. In addition, it has other benefits like controlling body weight, boosting of immune system and helps in avoiding other health complications. It is usually seen that diabetic patients often suffer from insomnia (sleep deprivation), which can be overcome with regular exercise. However, it is advisable for a diabetic patient to consult a physician and take guidelines about the exercising options.
Since food is the contributing factor for high sugar in the body, a diabetic patient should manage his/her diet in such a way that it contains foods with low glycemic index (GI). Low GI diets refer to those foods containing carbohydrates that break down slowly during digestion. Foods with high fiber content are found to have a low GI.
Some of the low GI foods include green leafy vegetables, raw carrots, oats, barley, corns, whole grain breads, basmati rice and noodles. One can consume almost all types of fruits including apples, grapes, oranges, strawberries, plums, pear and cherries. Studies have shown that consuming a low GI diet has many benefits on the body like controlling weight and diabetes, increasing sensitivity to insulin and also helps in reducing blood cholesterol and risk of heart disease. Another advantage of low GI foods is that it reduces hunger, which is helpful in combating polyphagia among diabetic patients.
The extracts of fenugreek leaves and seeds lower blood glucose levels to a certain extent. Other food supplements that bring down blood sugar are cinnamon and salacia (Salacia Oblonga). Cinnamon is effectively used for lowering blood glucose. It has been found out that including 1 gram of cinnamon in everyday diet for 40 days lowers blood glucose. Another valuable anti-diabetic supplement is salacia. The stems and roots of this medicinal plant are used for treating diabetes.
Taking chromium picolinate capsules decreases the symptoms of diabetes (polydipsia, fatigue, polyuria). Relevant studies have reported that chromium lowers blood glucose levels with no side effects. More than 70% of the diabetic patients have shown increase in sensitivity towards insulin after taking 200mcg chromium supplements per day.
It is advisable to check for thyroid problems as any disorder in thyroid functions can lead to pancreatic imbalance, which can cause insulin resistance in the body.
Following these easy steps and modifying lifestyles according to situations will definitely help in lowering blood glucose levels and fight certain other health complications. One can always remember that without good health, nothing is worth enjoying.