Exploring diabetes treatment options

by the Editor, SeniorInsider | May 31, 2011

While diabetes has been a serious health concern for people of all ages for many years, fortunately, new medical diabetes treatment options are coming available.  Of course, positive changes in lifestyle can also make a huge difference. This article will explore some of the best diabetes treatment choices and how they can benefit your health.

If you have diabetes, it means that your blood glucose levels are too high. This issue can potentially lead to issues like heart and kidney disease. Diabetes is treated differently depending on the type of diabetes that you have. However, medication is often prescribed for those with both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes.

Extreme Forms of Diabetes Treatment

On some rare occasions, people with a form of Type 1 diabetes that turns out to be very difficult to control. As a result, they may end up getting either a pancreas transplant or a kidney-pancreas transplant. An islet cell transplant is also another surgical option. Some recent studies have also used stem cell transplants. However, this procedure is currently considered to be risky.

Keep in mind that Type 2 diabetes is much more common than Type 1 diabetes. Usually the diabetes treatment for Type 2 diabetes includes insulin, constant blood sugar monitoring, exercise and a healthy diet.

Diabetes Treatment Involving Diet and Exercise

Those with Type 2 diabetes can greatly improve their condition by starting to eat healthier foods and sticking to a diabetes food plan. Carbohydrate intake needs to be controlled, and heavy drinking should be eliminated. Regular exercise is also very important. In fact, some people with Type 2 diabetes find that they can avoid using medicine altogether when their lifestyle is changed for the better.  Of course, it goes without saying that if you are overweight or obese, maintaining a healthier weight will help you in your fight against diabetes.

Healthy Foods Can Help Support Your Diabetic Treatment

A healthy diet for a diabetic contains fruits and vegetables, lean protein, and whole grains and beans. In fact, the ADA recommends that diabetics get 50% of their diet from carbs, 20% from protein and less than 30% from fat. You will also find special diabetic food on the market.

One of the reasons that exercise is so important for diabetes patients is that it lowers blood sugar. Further, exercise reduces overall stress levels. Unfortunately, when a person is stressed, his or her body is more likely to change insulin hormones. At least 30 minutes a day of exercise is recommended. Supplementation can also be helpful for diabetics. For example, magnesium can keep Type 2 diabetes from progressing.

Creating a Glucose Management Plan

Whether you have Type 1 diabetes or Type 2 diabetes, sticking to a glucose management plan is essential. The traditional method is to take an insulin shot via a syringe. While people can administer this diabetes treatment on their own, of course, the levels of insulin need to be carefully managed.

Devices to Handle Your Diabetes Treatment

One option for administering insulin is an insulin pen, which is preloaded with the proper dose. The insulin pen has a variety of advantages including the fact that the needle is already disinfected.  The pen is a far more handy way to dispense insulin.

Some diabetics also use a special gadget often called an “insulin pump” that is attached to the body and dispenses insulin. This device constantly monitors a person’s blood glucose level and corrects it when necessary.  When you eat a meal, you simply program into the device the level of carbohydrates that you are consuming. The device will give you a calculated dose of insulin designed to maintain the proper blood sugar levels and cover you for that particular meal.

Leading a Normal, Productive Life

The diabetes treatment options that are currently available will allow most diabetics to lead normal, productive lives. If you have any questions about your treatment plan, of course, consult with your doctor as soon as possible. All changes to your diet, exercise, or medication should be done under medical supervision.



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