14 Ways to Simplify Life with Diabetes
People with diabetes have done some incredible things. They’ve been Olympic athletes, tennis legends, and prima ballerinas. They can do basically anything a person without diabetes can do. Unfortunately, a chronic illness, like diabetes, can come with some limitations. Not all days are great days, and it’s important to acknowledge when you’re having a not-so-great day. The thing to remember is that everyone has their limits. However, if you have diabetes, recognizing when you’ve reached that limit is crucial. Knowing it’s time to slow down or take a break is essential to healthy management. Prioritize the things that must get done, and address the things you want to get done when you’ve had time to recuperate.
5. Focus on yourself
Whether you have diabetes or not, taking time to focus on yourself is so important. In our hectic lives, it can be difficult to take the time we need to do something we enjoy. Something that’s all about making ourselves feel good. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, rather than white-knuckling it, try to find a way to work in some “you time.” That doesn’t have to mean neglecting something else, but it can mean saying no to certain things.
Try to allocate time to do something special for yourself each week. Consider having coffee at your favorite coffee shop instead of rushing through the drive-thru. Maybe you’d prefer a walk in the park listening to a podcast or your favorite band… or drawing yourself a relaxing bath… or curling up with your favorite book at the end of a hectic day. Whatever you choose to do, make sure it’s a time dedicated to you.
6. Establish a support system
Finding a network of people who are sharing a similar experience can be incredibly beneficial. In addition to easing feelings of loneliness, it can serve as a great way to get tips and tricks for management that can make a world of difference. Consider an online forum or a support group.
7. Find healthy substitutions
Diabetes can leave you feeling like you’re spending all your time thinking about all the foods you “can’t” or “shouldn’t” have. But the truth is, in most situations diabetes doesn’t mean eliminating your favorite foods from your diet altogether. For the most part, it’s all about moderation. However, finding some healthy (and delicious) alternatives to your favorite recipes can help take some of the stress out of meal planning. Love pasta, but carbs send your numbers through the roof? Try substituting spaghetti squash for your noodles. Got a sweet tooth? There are a ton of diabetic-friendly desserts you can try, like this sugar-free cheesecake!
8. Learn to love your health care team
Finding a doctor you like isn’t a hurdle unique to people with diabetes, but it is one that’s especially important to overcome if you have the condition. Maintaining consistent and open communication with your health care team is essential to early detection of potential management issues. Additionally, there are a lot of serious complications that can come from poorly controlled diabetes. Feeling comfortable with your doctors can ease some of the embarrassment of bringing up some of the more uncomfortable topics.