Diets have been around for almost as long as humans have existed, from low fat to low carb to liquid diets, there are no shortages of diets available that offer people the chance at becoming and “healthy.” However, for people living with diabetes, a well-balanced diet is not just sought after for aesthetic purposes. Rather, it is crucial in managing glucose levels and preventing diabetes complications. Counting carbohydrates helps diabetics understand the influence that carbs can have on their blood sugars, so that they can better manage their glucose levels. Without tracking their carb intake, it can be hard to determine their basal and bolus amounts of insulin needed to keep their glucose levels at a good range. In order to get people living with diabetes started on their fitness journey, DMP has come up with some nutrition tipsand apps you can turn to in order to manage your diet and exercise.
Nutrition and Exercise Tips
Choose whole,unprocessed foods over processed foods: This may seem obvious but when looking for your next meal, choose whole foods over processed foods. Processed foods tend me to be loaded with sugar, carbs, and artificial additives which can cause blood sugar levels to spike. When in doubt, read the label. If you don’t know what the ingredients are, put it back. Another thing to note is that ingredient labels list ingredients based on weight. That means the ingredients that weigh the most are listed first. Take a moment to review this to ensure that ingredients that can affect your sugars aren’t at the beginning of the list.
Eat your fruits… in moderation: Fruits get a bad reputation due to having natural sugars by fad diets. However, fruits offer important nutrients such as fiber, vitamins, and minerals. When deciding on which fruits to eat, simply eat in moderation and monitor your blood sugars for changes. One thing you should try to avoid is dried fruits such as dried raisins and apricots, as these can raise your blood sugar. However, if you need to raise your blood sugar quickly this is definitely something to keep in mind.
Opt for slow release carbs: Slow release carbohydrates are carbs which provide a slower and more sustained release of energy. What this means is that they are broken down slower resulting in sugars being released at a steadier pace. Some examples of slow release carbohydrates include whole grain breads, sweet potatoes, lentils, and steel cut oats.
Commit to a fitness routine: In addition to a well-balanced diet, committing to a fitness routine will not only help with weight management but with cardiovascular health, strength, balance, coordination, and more. A mix of strength training and cardio is important in taking care of your health. Unsure where to start? Talk to your healthcare professional for advice and visit the DMP app for free exercise videos.
Now that you have the fundamentals down packed on nutrition and exercise, it’s important to decide how you will keep track of your nutrition and exercise. For some this means using good old Google, a calculator, and a notebook. While this may work for some people, with the advancements of technology there are so many resources to choose from to help you track not only your carbs but your exercise too. Read on to find out more about what these apps are.
MyFitnessPal: is an app which tracks diet and exercise all in one place. With an extensive database of food items and restaurants, it is easy to keep track of not only the calories you are consuming but the nutritional information such as carbs, proteins, fats etc. You can also input your exercise. Another great feature is MyFitnessPal syncs up with many fitness watches such as Fitbit and Garmin watches.
Calorie King: is similar to MyFitnessPal in that it helps you track your calories, carbs, and fats. The downside is that it does not offer detailed breakdown of micronutrients and has a lot of ads.
Glucose Buddy: is a tracking app for diabetics. On it you can track your blood sugar, insulin, medication, food, and more. It is a great app for monitoring patterns in your glucose levels, allowing you to modify medications accordingly.
DMP: is a diabetes app that provides community support and professional advice to diabetics. It has been proven that peer support leads to improved management of diabetes. Not only can diabetics connect with others going through the same thing but can access a vast collection of free resources including exercise videos, podcasts, articles, and livestreams.
Now that you have the primer to get started on managing your diet and health, it’s time to get started! However, you don’t need to start this journey alone. DMP is a community which can provide the community support to help you stick to your goals. Check us out today by downloading our free app on Google Play or the App Store. At DMP we believe that when we work together, we are stronger together!