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I Need Insulin

I need insulin by Famhealth

My doctor is insisting on Insulin, what do I need to know ?

Insulin is produced in our body naturally by the pancreatic cells and helps the body in converting sugar into energy. When our body produces insufficient or no insulin then doctors recommend taking Insulin additionally, to ensure body metabolises carbohydrates into sugar, and sugar does not accumulate for a prolonged period of time in the form of blood glucose.

There are myths associated with taking Insulin, read below to find out the most frequently asked questions by people living with diabetes.

I have been asked by my doctor to take Insulin, is my Diabetes getting worse ?

Taking Insulin does not necessarily mean that your Diabetes is getting worse. To control your high blood glucose levels your doctor may prescribe Insulin therapy. By not taking the Insulin therapy you may further develop Diabetes-related complications such as Glaucoma in the eyes and malfunctioning of the kidneys or the liver, neuropathy, foot problems, nerve related issues etc. People with Type 2 Diabetes often use combined therapy of medicine and Insulin to keep their sugar levels in control.

Will injecting Insulin be painful ?

Injecting Insulin is not as painful as you may think. Your doctor will direct you how to inject Insulin in the right way and painlessly. Insulin should be given in the areas where one has more flab and less muscle. There are many new types of syringes which are thinner and painless to use, so this should not be a cause for worry.

Once I begin Insulin, will I have to take it for the rest of my life ?

The answer to this question is different for different types of Diabetes. For people living with Type 1 Diabetes this is true; however, for people with Type 2 Diabetes, studies have shown that taking medication on time, physical exercises and diet control can lead to reversal of the condition. Some people simply do not want to start Insulin because of the fear of having to take it forever. However studies have revealed that once the blood glucose levels are under control, patients have been able to switch back to oral medication and no longer have to depend on Insulin.

Travelling with Insulin is tedious, can I miss my injections ?

Doctors all round the world strongly recommend that people who are Insulin dependent must not miss any injections. If you miss your regular dose, it will disrupt the ground you have gained in Diabetes management and take you back to square one. Your blood sugar levels will shoot up and create an imbalance of toxins in the body, leading to further complications.

It is a good idea to make your own small back-pack where you could keep your syringes, Insulin, cotton, gauze and astringent handy. Insulin has to be kept in a cool place and, hence, sometimes needs to be refrigerated. If you are travelling, check with your pharmacist for new types of Insulin pens and cartridges, which might not need refrigeration.

What I can do as family/friend of a person living on Insulin ?

If your partner has Insulin-dependent Diabetes, we understand that you would have your own set of stresses that can be mentally and physically exhausting. You would need to be able to support your partner in different ways, such as establishing and maintaining a healthy diet and exercise routine, checking your partner for wounds that may be concerning, learning to give Insulin shots correctly and painlessly, as well as routinely check blood glucose levels.

There are quite a few things that you can do to help yourself and your partner. First and foremost, in order to support your partner in living with this condition, you need to take care of yourself, both mentally and physically. Establish a health plan for yourself, which will keep you in good shape to deal with the stresses that go along with Diabetes. It is even better if you can exercise together. Taking up meditation and yoga is also a very good way to reduce the impact of stress on your body.

You do not need to give up your life and pleasures in order to support your partner. For example, develop a balanced diet plan that takes care of your partner’s nutritional requirements, but do not forget to add your favourite dish to the equation!

Consult with your doctor to plan an evening out, away from the regular routine. Understand and follow the doctor’s instructions when it comes to dos and don’ts for eating and drinking on your evening out, and you will be fine.

Make sure to have a backup for yourself. As you support your partner in living with Diabetes, you need not give up your interests. Have family/friends provide you with backup whenever you need to step away for some time. This also takes care of the condition known as “compassion fatigue” in caregivers.

It is also good to have support of other people living with this condition just in case you yourself are under the weather for a couple of days.

To read more on Diabetes, click on the link below.

Diabetes

I’m a borderline case, what can I expect ?

Have you been diagnosed with borderline high blood sugar levels? In your case the blood sugar levels recorded are higher than normal, but not high enough to be full-fledged Diabetes. This is referred to as the Prediabetes stage which can be reversed by following recommended guidelines.

During this phase, your pancreatic cells are still producing a little amount of insulin to convert carbohydrates into sugar, however, Insulin produced by the pancreas is not sufficient to remove sugars effectively, keeping the blood glucose level high.

It has been observed that people with Prediabetes may not take this condition seriously. However, research suggests that the sooner one begins to take precautions, the better are the chances of reversal of this condition.

 

 

Some quick tips

  • Make small changes and be a winner!
    • Prediabetes can eventually lead to Type 2 Diabetes; however, this development can be easily prevented. It requires small efforts and minor changes in your lifestyle. Research shows that reducing your body weight by just 5 -10 %, to begin with, makes a remarkable difference in the natural Insulin production in the body. Weight loss can also delay the onset of Type 2 Diabetes significantly.
  • Watch your portion sizes
    • Dieticians round the globe suggest having 3 main meals and 3 mini meals to have a good control of your glucose levels.
      You may choose to use smaller plates for meals to check on serving portions to begin with. The plate method advocated by ADA is specially designed for people living with Diabetes or Prediabetes. This approach advises that you fill half of your plate with fibrous fruits and vegetables; one quarter with low carbohydrates, such as brown rice or a baked potato; and the last quarter should be lean protein, like grilled fish or chicken.
  • Never skip meals
    • Eat regularly. It is always a good idea to follow a regular meal pattern and not skip meals. People who eat regular meals, beginning with healthy breakfast, are healthier, more energetic and weigh less than those who skip meals.
      Consume mini meals. Eating healthy mini meals and snacks such as fruits, multigrain bars and low-calorie preparations help you to not only control your blood sugar, but also hunger pangs and prevents you from overeating and binging.
  • Limit tobacco and alcohol consumption
    • Research suggests smoking may aggravate complications from Diabetes, such as heart diseases and may lead to nerve and kidney damage. It is, therefore, highly advisable to significantly limit or give up on smoking. 
      Alcohol consumption can have a strong impact on your blood sugar levels; they often spike blood glucose levels leading to poor diabetes management. It is a good idea to take your doctor’s advice on whether you can consume alcohol, and how much. In any case, please remember to always eat a snack or a meal while consuming alcohol to prevent fluctuations or spiking of blood glucose levels.
  • Exercise
    • Exercise is integral to a healthy lifestyle. If you have been diagnosed with Prediabetes, it is even more essential for you to have a fitness routine. 
      It is a good idea to check with your doctor before you starting any exercise program. However, a daily walk of 30 – 45 minutes usually makes a good starting point. You may also choose from a wide variety of exercise regimes such as Yoga, Pilates, Tai chi, Swimming, Dancing and Jogging.
  • Acquire as much information as you can
    • It is believed an informed person can make better decisions. Hence we urge you to make an effort to learn about food and lifestyle changes that will help you manage your condition better.
  • Take help and support from your family
    • Research suggests that it is easier to manage Diabetes more effectively with family support. Your partner, family, and friends can play a huge role in motivating you and helping you adhere to your diabetes management programme. 
      It is a good idea to check with your doctor before you starting any exercise program. However, a daily walk of 30 – 45 minutes usually makes a good starting point. You may also choose from a wide variety of exercise regimes such as Yoga, Pilates, Tai chi, Swimming, Dancing and Jogging.
  • Last but not the least
    • Always maintain a positive approach. Studies suggest that people who consider Prediabetes as a burden or stress are often unsuccessful in managing this condition. Hence, with a positive mind and attitude you can successfully control your blood glucose levels and come on top of your condition.

What I can do as family/friend of a diagnosed Prediabetes?

Studies reveal that a majority of partners and family members may be equally worried upon detection of their partner’s Prediabetes/Borderline condition. But the good news is that you and your family can play a very important role in arresting and reversing the condition. Research suggests, Partners and family members who actively take interest in managing Prediabetes/borderline condition with in their spouses have been very successful in achieving excellent results.

You may already know that Prediabetes is a warning condition, but studies are on our side saying the condition can be reversed by bringing in lifestyle changes and following low carb diets, exercise regimes and incorporating lifestyle changes.

  • Equip yourself first
    • Reading and collecting information on diabetes yourself can be very helpful for you to understand what your partner is going through physically and emotionally. You may also choose to take guidance from a certified diabetic educator or a physician to help your partner in the best possible ways.
  • Support your partner mentally and emotionally
    • Psychologists suggest that people living with Prediabetes/Diabetes undergo tremendous emotional turmoil. Feelings such as anxiety, fear, guilt, anger, frustration and denial are bound to be experienced. As a family member / partner you should try to be supporting and understanding of these emotional ups and downs. You are also advised to consult a certified diabetic educator to help you motivate your partner in dealing with this condition.
  • Participate in arresting Prediabetes/borderline condition
    • It is always easier to approach a challenge as two people rather than one. By working together not only are you motivating yourself but you are also acting as a check for the other person. Planning goals together is very helpful in attaining successful results, it is a good idea to discuss and chalk out plans mutually before starting to follow any regime for management of this condition. Research suggests that partners, who ate the same food, and did combine exercises yielded better results than self-managed programmes. 
      Reminding your partner to adhere to the Prediabetes management programme may help in controlling high glucose levels in people with Borderline conditions. You may also choose to follow “eating by the plate method” advocated by ADA and try various diets. 
      However, it is important to beware that constant nagging, complaining or forcing may backfire in managing this condition. It’s advisable to set realistic goals, and handle situations compassionately.
  • Empower and replenish yourself
    • Research shows family and partners undergo tremendous mental and physical fatigue. Remember to take care of yourself too, because you may also undergo mental and physical stress while looking after your companion. 
      Ensure that you have time for yourself and for pursuing the interests you enjoyed before Diabetes made an appearance in your life. Pamper yourself and remain cheerful. 
      It is important to strike a balance in order to manage your personal and professional life. Set realistic goals and do not give up. Eat a well-balanced healthy diet and learn different ways to cope up with stress. To know more read the below tips to manage compassion.

To read more on Diabetes, click on the link below.

Diabetes

Compliance and Checklist

Compliance and Checklist for Diabetes

Compliance and Checklist for Diabetes by Famhealth

Despite significant modern advances in diagnosis and treatment of diabetes, compliance still remains the most crucial aspect of blood glucose level control. Scientific research in National Institute Health USA, suggests “Poor glycaemic control may be reflected by both the failure of diabetes self-management by patients as well as inadequate intervention strategies by clinicians”. Hence identifying the barriers in compliance and treatment adherence is an equally important aspect for successful diabetes management.

Barriers in compliances may be due to various reasons but as per research the majority of non-compliances in diabetes management could be due to In-adequate information, Cultural differences, Religious beliefs, Family dynamics, Emotional imbalances, and sometimes poor communication skills.

According to the American Diabetes Association, The major compliance regimen for people living with Diabetes includes:

  • On time Medications:
    • Medications on time, helps you to maintain a “good control” of blood glucose levels in your body. People living with diabetes are often prescribed multiple medications for diabetes and other co morbid conditions. 
      To ease your medicinal intake you are advised to check with your doctor on the sequence of medicines to be consumed as per priority for e.g. which medications to consume before/after meals. 
      To manage and ensure medicinal compliance you are encouraged to take the help of friends/family/colleagues who can effectively remind you to take your medications on time every time!
  • Food & Nutrition:
    • According to Dr. Mona registered dietician from USA says, “Good food is good medicine and bad food is bad medicine”. You are advised to have frequent diabetes friendly meals, to reap the maximum benefits of successful diabetes management. To know more refer to our Food section.
  • Exercise regimen:
    • Regimen: Having a daily exercise regime not only helps you to stay fit and healthy, but has also helped so many people in reversing their conditions remarkably! At Famhealth exercising can never get boring! Get to know the new forms and join our community to experience fun “do it with us” exercising modules.
  • Monitoring blood glucose levels:
    • Checking your blood glucose levels timely as recommended by your doctor helps to administer the effect of food, medicines and physical activity in your body. It is almost a reflection of how well you are managing your condition. You are encouraged to take help of your partner/family member/caregivers to learn the right ways of monitoring blood glucose levels to ensure diabetes compliance.

Family/friends/caregivers play a vital role in helping a person living with diabetes to overcome all the barriers and come on top their conditions

  • Check blood sugar levels as often as recommended by your doctor. By checking your blood glucose level, you can know how food, physical activity and medicine affect your blood glucose.
  • Inspect your feet daily for cuts, injuries, blisters, infection and changes in skin pigmentation.
  • Inspect your mouth, teeth and gums. People living with diabetes often are prone to periodontal gum diseases, doctors’ advice brushing twice daily and flossing once in a week.
  • Check for infection, cuts, blisters, or colour changes all over the body including your underarms, groin area, area between toes, etc.
  • As you may be already aware, people with diabetes must avoid hot water baths as hot baths often lead to wrinkling and blisters in skin.
  • Keep your supplies close: Make an attractive kit bag and keep all the necessary medications and food items within your reach. Replenish the kit daily to keep your energy elevated, and blood glucose levels normal.
  • Last but not the least take your medications on time and at least exercise or walk for a minimum 45 minutes daily to regulate blood glucose levels.

Non adherence to the above treatment compliances often leads to frustration in families and also in doctors treating diabetes individuals

Diabetes Types & symptoms

Exercise for Diabetic Patients

Exercise for Diabetic Patients by Famhealth

As you may already know Diabetes is referred to as a “lifestyle disease”. One of the reasons contributing to the condition is sedentary living. Regular exercise and undertaking physical activities of one’s choice can play an important role in Diabetes management.

Research indicates that people living with Diabetes, who undertake some form of regular physical activity or have an exercise routine not only have a better control over their blood sugar levels but are also better able to handle the stress

According to Prof. Sheri Colberg-Ochs, PhD at Old Dominion University, Virginia, USA, physical activity can aid in Insulin secretion and keeping the blood glucose level in control. Working out regularly also keeps a check on obesity and movement coordination, as according to research, people living with Diabetes are prone to dis-balancing and falling. Falling down may further lead to conditions such as fractures and restricted locomotion, which can add to unwanted stress and pain in people living with Diabetes.

The good news is that exercises do not necessarily have to be necessarily boring and monotonous. You can invite friends and family to try out new activities and routines with you.

Exercise Tips

Water Aerobics

Muscle toning exercises in water are one of the best ways to beat the heat in the summers. One can try it in the pool with the entire family. Check out the places where you can try water aerobics in Delhi/NCR in our website and have fun with your family.

Swimming

Swimming stretches and relaxes your muscles and doesn’t put pressure on your joints, which is great for people with diabetes. For those with diabetes or at risk for developing diabetes, studies show it improves cholesterol levels, burns calories and lowers stress levels. To get the most benefit from swimming, we recommend that you swim at least three times a week for at least ten minutes and gradually increase the length of the workout. Make sure to have a snack and monitor blood sugars. Lastly, let the lifeguard know that you have diabetes before you get in the pool.

Tai Chi

It is a Chinese form of exercise, which uses slow & smooth body movements to relax the mind and body. In 2009, researchers at the University of Florida studied 62 Korean women assigned to one of two groups

a) Control group and an exercise group that began a regular practice of Tai Chi.

b) people who practised some other physical activity. Those who completed the tai chi sessions showed significant improvement in blood sugar control. They also reported increased vitality, energy and mental health.

Frog leaps/ Spot jogging

Are you bored and tired of going to the gym but miss the running/cardio and the treadmill? Try spot jogging with music on and then jump with a squat (frog leaps). It is believed to be extremely beneficial in toning and strengthing muscles. You are advised not to do it if you have arthritis, knee and foot problems.

Power Yoga 

A traditional form of exercise mixed with latest strengthening postures, power yoga incorporates fluid movements that build flexibility, strength and balance. It is helpful for people with a variety of chronic conditions, including diabetes. It lowers stress and improves nerve function, which leads to an increased state of mental health and wellness. According to the ADA, power yoga may improve the blood glucose levels due to improved muscle mass.

Zumba

A unique form of strengthening work out which elevates your heart rate and the best part about doing Zumba is it is done along with catchy beats. Zumba burns up to 500 calories but it is not advisable for people with arthritis, knee and foot problems.

Various other dancing forms

Dancing is not only great for your body. Various forms like Salsa, contemporary, hip-hop, freestyle are the unique way to de-stress also. The mental work to remember dance steps and sequences actually boosts brain power and improves memory.  For those with diabetes, it is a fun and exciting way to increase physical activity, promote weight loss, improve flexibility, lower blood sugar and reduce stress. Chair dancing, which incorporates the use of a chair to support people with limited physical abilities, makes dancing an option for many people. In just 30 minutes, a 150-pound adult can burn up to 150 calories. 

Bhangra

A leading endocrinologist Doctor Sanjay Kalra recommends Bhangra a popular dance form which has originated from Northern India but practised worldwide. A 45-minute Bhangra performance regime can burn out up to 600 calories, and also help you lower your blood sugar levels and check on obesity.

Fun Activities With Family

Water Workouts

Water workouts stretch and relaxes your muscles and doesn’t put pressure on your joints, which is great for people with diabetes. For those with diabetes or at risk for developing diabetes, studies show swimming and water exercises such as aqualates, aqua aerobics, aqua yoga improves cholesterol levels, burns calories and lowers stress levels. 

Cycling

Cycling is a recommended sport for people living with diabetes, it can be conducted either at your own pace or at a set distance which challenges your aerobic endurance by helping you burn calories and keep your glucose levels under control. Research suggests that if you cycle for 45-60 mins a day, this will help you achieve your physical activity targets in keeping a check on your blood glucose levels. People with diabetes must check their glucose levels before beginning cycling and must not cycle in rocky and unstable terrain to avoid falls and wounds. 

Adventure

To break the monotony of the fast-paced city life, and lifestyle people with diabetes may choose to opt for something adventurous like adventure theme parks, visit adventure places, or enjoy the thrill of flying a Cessna and paragliding. Trekking and camping can be also a very exciting way to burn calories as well as enjoy a family trip. This list is not exhaustive; you can recommend your way of breaking the monotony and add to our list. However, people living with diabetes are recommended to check few things while opting for adventurous holidays and recreations.

Laughing activity clubs

Scientific studies confirm stress and diabetes have a direct connection; stress often leads to erratic glucose levels. To keep the stress under control one of the easiest ways is joining a laughter club. Laughter helps keep diabetes under control and it is similar to “exercising”. Laughter improves the overall performance of the heart’s muscular function and helps ward off cardiovascular disease and lower blood glucose levels.

Running Clubs

Running can improve your health and help with losing weight in an extremely manageable way for people with diabetes, while providing immense satisfaction and reward in the process.  

Running can be the ideal form of exercise for people with diabetes as it helps the body’s sensitivity to insulin. This can be especially useful for people with type 2 diabetes to help combat insulin resistance. 

To read more on Diabetes, click on the link below.

Diabetes Types & symptoms

Diabetes Recipe – Tropical Banana Freeze

Diabetes: Tropical banana freeze by Famhealth

Serves: 4, Time taken: 10 minutes plus 1-hour freezing

Nutrition Facts
Makes 4 Servings (Amount per Serving)
Calories (kcal)189.8
Protein (g)2.3
Carbohydrates (g)33.6
Total Sugars (g)17.4
Dietary Fibre (g)3.8
Fat (g)7.2
Saturated Fat (g)5.2

1 tbsp Grated fresh, frozen or desiccated coconut4 Bananas, peeled

1 tbsp Sesame seeds

100ml/3 fl oz Coconut milk

1 tbsp Honey

1 Lime, juice only

Steps:

  1. Slice the bananas into 2.5cm/1” pieces, lay them on a baking tray and freeze until hard (at least one hour)
  2. Dry fry the coconut and sesame seeds, stirring frequently, until browned
  3. Just before serving, take the bananas from the freezer and place in the blender with the coconut milk, honey and lime juice. Blend until smooth. Serve in small glass bowls, garnished with the toasted coconut and sesame seeds.

Note

The Glycaemic Load (GL) of banana depends on the variety of banana, where it was grown, and most importantly, how ripe it is. Choose slightly underripe bananas and the GL can be low as 11, and even the mean of 10 studies was only 12.

For more related recipes, click the link below.

Diabetes

FOOD INDISCIPLINE

The Importance And Essentials
Of Healthy Diet

Good nutrition is extremely important as it is the fuel that
keeps the body healthy. Good food discipline includes not just eating the
right kind of food but also at the right time. It also includes good
habits with regard to buying, cleaning and storing food, correct
preparation of food to maximize the health benefits. A big part of
food discipline is avoiding foods that harm the body, like preserved
foods which have added salt and preservatives. Avoiding addicting
substances like alcohol is also a part of good food discipline.

FOOD INDISCIPLINE

Why is it important to have a healthy diet?

  • A well balanced diet can help in preventing obesity, reduce diseases like arthritis, heart diseases, type two diabetes, certain cancers and also prevent mood swings.
  • Our diet also provides certain vital nutrients likevitamins and minerals which are required in small quantities for good health.Lack of minerals like iron can cause anaemia. Lack of vitamins can cause diseases like night blindness, weakness of bones, bleeding problems and nerve pains.

What are the essentials of a good diet?

  • A good diet should provide energy in the form of calories. These depend on lifestyle and gender. Most women need between 1500-2000 Kcal per day and men might require 2500-3500 Kcal per day.
  • A well balanced diet should consist of protein (meat, eggs, legumes), carbohydrates (bread, cereal, potato), fats (oils, butter) as well as minerals (milk, meat, green leafy vegetables), vitamins (fruits, vegetables, meat, eggs) and water.

How can I prevent food indiscipline?

Keeping in mind some simple lifestyle habits can help in avoiding food indiscipline.

  • Avoid temptation- Avoid keeping junk food like chips and colas at home. That way, even if temptation strikes, you’ll be forced to choose healthier options like fresh fruits and salads.
  • Stock up on fresh produce and cook from scratch at home- Making food from scratch at home and carrying the same as lunch to office or school helps to develop the taste of fresh food. It is also healthier as you can avoid harmful preservatives in tinned and canned foods, like nitrates and excess salt.
  • Keep water at hand- Many a time, we mistake thirst for hunger pangs or food cravings. Keeping a glass of water handy can help us remember to keep sipping through the day.
  • Avoid excess dieting- Many people indulge in crash dieting or avoid food groups. This can be unhealthy in the long run. It’s best to have a balanced diet with all food groups in moderation. One can avoid fried foods and keep a check on portion sizes to control weight.
  • Healthy plating- A healthy plate should have protein like meat, fish, eggs or pulses on one fourth, one fourth should have whole grains and the balance should have healthy salads with low calorie dressings like olive oil or lemon.
  • Keep one meal as a cheat meal every week- This helps to prevent bingeing through the week.
  • Shop healthy- It’s always better to avoid food shopping if you’re hungry- you’ll be more likely to buy unhealthy foods. Plan your meals in advance, make a grocery list and shop accordingly. This way you’ll always have the ingredients for healthy meals at hand and there will be enough variety to avoid boredom
  • Use technology- There are many smart devices that can help to make food tastier and healthier. From air fryers to popcorn makers, technology can help in preparing healthy, delicious meals.
  • Indulge in healthy snacking- The urge to snack between meals is commonly seen in children. Keep carrot sticks, fruits and popcorn along with lemonade ready to avoid unhealthy snacking.
  • Eating out- To avoid bingeing at parties and while eating out, have a light snack, like soup or a salad, before attending the event. Opt for roasted and grilled food along with healthy salads and choose fruits for dessert.
  • Correct storage of food is also important. It’s always advisable to refrigerate perishables like milk, eggs and freeze meats as these can otherwise transmit bacteria that cause food poisoning.

Source

https://www.webmd.com/children/kids-healthy-eating-habits

https://www.livestrong.com/article/545644-self-discipline-in-eating-and-exercising

https://www.medscape.com