I have been diagnosed as being pre-diabetic. What should I do to avoid becoming diabetic??
The good news is that there are steps that you can take to prevent or delay diabetes or to reduce your risk of getting it. A blood glucose level (measured in the lab) that’s between 100 and 125 mg/dl or a hemoglobin A1C between 5.7 and 6.4 percent is indicative of pre-diabetes. A major clinical trial, called the Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP) showed that lifestyle changes (losing weight, eating better, being more active) reduced the risk of diabetes by 58 percent. Specifically, losing between 5 and 7 percent of body weight, and being physically active for at least 30 minutes most days of the week was most beneficial. So, if you’re overweight, consider meeting with a dietitian and/or joining a support group or a commercial weight loss program to help you shed a few pounds. If you’re not already doing so, think about ways to be more active during the day so that over the day, you are getting at least 30 minutes of physical activity. Walking and bicycling are options, but you can also sign up for a dance class or climb stairs, for example. Other steps that you can take that have been shown to lower the risk of developing diabetes include eating more leafy greens and whole grain foods (like whole-wheat bread, whole-grain cereal, brown rice); cutting out sugary drinks like soda, juice, sweetened ice tea and sports drinks; drinking coffee (minus the cream and sugar); limiting your intake of red meat (beef, pork, lamb) and processed meats (cold cuts, hot dogs, bacon); de-stressing at the end of the day (yoga, meditation and deep breathing are ways that can help); and aiming for 7-8 hours of sleep each night.