Tips for Preventing Prediabetes
Preventing prediabetes is as simple as adopting a healthy lifestyle.
About 84 million adults in the U.S., more than 1 out of 3, have prediabetes. Ninety percent of people with prediabetes don’t know they have it. If left untreated, prediabetes can lead to type 2 diabetes. Put simply: it’s smart to take precautionary steps to avoid prediabetes and type 2 diabetes.
Being diagnosed with prediabetes means your blood glucose levels are above normal, but not quite high enough to be considered diabetic. There are several risk factors associated with prediabetes and type 2 diabetes, which include: being overweight, living a sedentary lifestyle, having a family history of diabetes or heart disease, battling high blood pressure or cholesterol and being older than 45.
The good news is, there are several simple changes you can adopt to prevent prediabetes. Here are a few of the most impactful steps you can take:
Lose weight: According to the Center for Disease Control, losing 5 – 7 percent of body weight can make a drastic impact on your risk of developing prediabetes and type 2 diabetes.
Exercise: Participating in regular physical activity can also lower your risk of prediabetes. Maintaining regular physical activity can be as simple as walking briskly for 150 minutes per week, total.
Eat Healthy: Swap sodium-heavy restaurant and processed foods for fresh vegetables and lean protein sources.
Quit Smoking: Smoking causes type 2 diabetes. People who smoke have a 30 – 40 percent higher risk of diabetes than non-smokers. Smoking is known to increase inflammation and oxidative stress in the body, both of which damages cells and interferes with proper cell function.
When you’re making lifestyle choices to support the prevention of prediabetes, it’s important to stay motivated and to actively solve any problems that slow your progress. Making proactive choices to prevent prediabetes and type 2 diabetes is a gift to your health.