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How Seniors and the Elderly Can Manage Diabetes and have Good Health

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Do you know the three types of diabetes? Do you know what causes diabetes and how to prevent and control it?

With National Diabetes Month upon us in November, take a few minutes to learn more about diabetes and understand about how seniors and the elderly who have diabetes can prevent it and keep the disease controlled.

When your blood glucose, also called blood sugar, is too high, it’s called diabetes. About 37 million people have diabetes In the U.S. Diabetes can damage the eyes, kidneys, nerves, and heart. It’s also linked to some types of cancer.

The Three Types of Diabetes

There are three main types of diabetes:

  • Type 1 — Affects 5-10% of people with diabetes as the body doesn’t make insulin.
  • Type 2 — This affects about 90-95% of people with diabetes. The body doesn’t use insulin well and can’t keep blood sugar at normal levels.
  • Gestational diabetes — Develops in pregnant women who have never had diabetes. Babies could have a higher risk for health problems and women with gestational diabetes may be at risk for type 2 diabetes later in life. The baby may be at risk for obesity and developing type 2 diabetes.

For any type of diabetes, managing the disease is essential to your health. Taking care of your body with diabetes means you have a better chance of preventing health problems related to diabetes such as kidney disease, vision loss, heart disease, and stroke.

Here’s another important health note for you. With fall in full swing and cooler weather keeping people indoors more, it’s especially a good time to make good practices during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Patients who were hospitalized with COVID-19 were more likely to be readmitted within two months of discharge if they have diabetes or other chronic diseases.

Three Takeaways

Three important ways to take care of yourself if you have diabetes are:

  • Meet with your health care provider
  • Eat well
  • Exercise

When you meet with your health care provider, talk about short-term diabetes maintenance and a plan that takes the long view. Ask questions. Take notes. 

Get your blood pressure checked. Get your feet checked. Step on the scale. Talk about medications and your options. Ask about vaccines or boosters you should get.

Diabetes doesn’t have to be overwhelming. Things like eating healthy food, exercising such as walking, stretching, swimming, yoga, dance, or other activities can help you manage the disease.

One easy thing to do is to have a plan for eating. Fruits and vegetables, whole grains, lean meats, tofu, beans, seeds, and non-fat or low-fat milk and cheese are great, healthy choices.

Try eating in groups and exercising with others for encouragement. And another healthy tip is to make sure you get 7 to 8 hours of sleep each night to manage your mood and energy levels.

A CARING-FIRST ENVIRONMENT

Senior living communities like Bellaire at Stone Port are precisely that—a community. Residents become friends and even family, and a caring team is there to help them maintain their quality of life. 

At Bellaire at Stone Port, we offer both Assisted Living and Memory Care and we care with Honesty, Excellence, Accountability, Residents first and Teamwork. We like to call it Caring with H.E.A.R.T.™!

If you believe a senior living community would benefit your loved one, get in touch with us. Schedule a visit or download a brochure today!

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