Preventing Type 2 Diabetes

by David Egan

colaType 2 Diabetes is on the increase. It’s a major cause of ill-health, and it will knock roughly 15 years off your lifespan if you get it.

To make matters worse, people are getting the disease at a younger age. There was a time when people got Type 2 Diabetes in their 40s, but now it’s beginning to affect teenagers. What’s causing this deadly epidemic?

Poor lifestyle habits.

Yep, you heard me…we’re doing it to ourselves with our unhealthy habits.

According to the World Health Organisation, the disease is largely preventable, and there are simple steps you can take to reduce your risk.

One of the main causes of Type 2 Diabetes is being overweight. If you are overweight, do something about it now!

Get Active

Regular physical activity reduces the risk for a range of illnesses, not just diabetes. Aim to be physically active on most days, and build physical activity into your daily life.

  • Walk or cycle to work or school
  • Park at the back of the car park when you do your shopping – give yourself further to walk!
  • Get off the bus one or two stops early, and walk the rest of the way
  • Avoid elevators & escalators – use the stairs instead
  • Have an active lunch break – go for a short walk or run
  • Limit the amount of time you & your family watch television – play a board game together instead
  • Play active games – you’re never too old to play catch or frisbee
  • Take part in regular organised physical activities. If you’re not interested in sport, why not try dance, yoga, tai chi, or other non-competitive activities

Diet

  • Don’t eat sugar or sugary foods – you don’t need sugar, and it’s bad for you
  • Eat plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables
  • Cut out refined carbohydrates – pasta, bread, cakes and biscuits
  • Limit your consumption of potatoes and rice
  • Drink water or milk instead of fizzy drinks

If you are overweight, make the simple changes outlined above – and give yourself time. If you need extra help, check out our services. You didn’t put the weight on overnight, so don’t expect to shift it overnight!

Photo by: JohnGoode licensed under Creative Commons

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