Small lifestyle changes could be a big step toward diabetes prevention. Prevention is especially important if you're currently at an increased risk of diabetes because of :
Family history of diabetes
Small lifestyle changes can prevent or delay the onset of diabetes. Making a few changes in your lifestyle now may help you avoid the serious health complications of diabetes in the future, such as nerve, kidney and heart damage. It's never too late to start. Consider these tips :
Losing weight reduces the risk of diabetes. People in one large study, losing weight reduced the risk of developing diabetes by almost 60% after losing approximately 7% of their body weight with changes in exercise and diet. More weight loss will translate into even greater benefits. Set a weight-loss goal based on your current body weight. Talk to your doctor about reasonable short-term goals and expectations.
Aim for 30 minutes or more of moderate to vigorous aerobic exercise — such as brisk walking, swimming, biking or running — on most days for a total of at least 150 minutes a week. There are many benefits to regular physical activity. Exercise can help you:
Plants provide vitamins, minerals and carbohydrates in your diet. Carbohydrates include sugars and starches — the energy sources for your body — and fiber. Dietary fiber, also known as roughage or bulk, is the part of plant foods your body can't digest or absorb.
Fiber-rich foods promote weight loss and lower the risk of diabetes. Eat a variety of healthy, fiber-rich foods, which include:
Fatty foods are high in calories and should be eaten in moderation. Saturated fats are found in dairy products and meats. These should be a small part of your diet. You can limit saturated fats by eating low-fat dairy products and lean chicken and pork. To help lose and manage weight, your diet should include a variety of foods with unsaturated fats. Sources of good fats include:
Routine screening is recommended for all adults age 45 or older and for the following groups: