(BlackDoctor.org) — Diabetes success is measured by how well you can control your blood sugar. There are 3.2 million Blacks living with diabetes, and one of the major challenges they face is managing their disease with proper diet, regular exercise, and medication.
However, many factors can affect blood sugar besides diet and activity, and employing some simple steps and strategies in your everyday routine can help not only live a better life, but possibly avoid a trip to the emergency room.
Do a Quick Body Scan
As you dry off from your shower each day, inspect your body head to toe. Look for dry, red, or sore spots that could become infected. Don’t forget the places where moisture can hide and bacteria can grow. Check under your arms and breasts, and between your legs and toes. Pay special attention to your feet. Use a mirror to help you see all over and treat injuries quickly.
Make Insulin Work for Your Lifestyle
If your schedule is fast-paced and meal times are unpredictable, ask your doctor about rapid-acting or fast-acting insulin. It may be a convenient addition to your current therapy. These rapidly acting insulins can be taken just before eating and have an effect on your blood sugars within 30 minutes.
Power Up Your Diet
Print the American Diabetes Association’s list of 10 super foods. They have a low glycemic index, meaning they aren’t likely to cause a spike in blood sugar. They are also packed with important nutrients. Post the list on your refrigerator so it’s at the ready when you make your shopping list, plan meals, or look in the refrigerator for something to eat.
Take a 2-Minute Test
Put your glucose monitor on your nightstand to remind you to check blood sugar first thing in the morning and before bedtime, if your doctor advises. Target range before meals is between 90 and 130 mg/dL. Before bedtime, between 110 and 150 mg/dL.
Put Your Shoes by the Door
Take a minute to put a pair of slip-on shoes and socks near the door so you aren’t tempted to go outside barefoot. Make sure your slippers or house shoes are in a handy location too, so you’ll remember to wear them inside to avoid injury.
Prepare Emergency Snack Packs