Making a few lifestyle changes can dramatically lower the chances of developing type 2 diabetes. The same changes can also lower the chances of developing heart disease and some cancers.
Control Your Weight:
Excess weight is the single most important cause of type 2 diabetes. Being overweight increases the chances of developing type 2 diabetes seven fold. Being obese makes you 20 to 40 times more likely to develop diabetes than someone with a healthy weight. Losing weight can help if your weight is above the healthy-weight range. Losing 7 to 10 percent of your current weight can cut your chances of developing type 2 diabetes in half.
Inactivity promotes type 2 diabetes. Working your muscles more often and making them work harder improves their ability to use insulin and absorb glucose. This puts less stress on your insulin-making cells. Long bouts of hot, sweaty exercise aren’t necessary to reap this benefit. Walking briskly for a half hour every day reduces the risk of developing type 2 diabetes by 30 percent. This amount of exercise has a variety of other benefits as well. And even greater cardiovascular and other advantages can be attained by more, and more intense, exercise.
Tune Up Your Diet:
- Choose whole grains and whole grain products over highly processed carbohydrates.
- Skip the sugary drinks, and choose water, coffee, or tea instead. Choose good fats instead of bad fats.
- Limit red meat and avoid processed meat; choose nuts, whole grains, poultry, or fish instead.
- Don’t smoke