On Having Type II Diabetes
Type II Diabetes
I have non-insulin dependent type II diabetes. This does not prevent me from enjoying my life and eating a wide range of foods; it does mean that I must pay attention to my blood glucose levels and keep a record of my daily readings.
Our bodies get the energy they need to function by making glucose from the foods that we eat, like bread, potatoes, rice, pasta, milk and fruit. For us to be able to put this glucose to work, our bodies require insulin.
Insulin is a hormone that helps our bodies control the level of glucose (sugar) in our blood. Type 2 diabetes is a disease in which the pancreas does not produce enough insulin, or our body does not properly use the insulin it makes.
If you have type 2 diabetes, glucose builds up in your blood instead of being used for energy.
There are two things that I do that help me stay healthy. One is watch what I eat. My daily meals are made from whole grains, vegetables, a piece of fruit or two and lean meats with chicken being one food that I use regularly.
When I was first diagnosed with diabetes, it really was not that much of a surprise, both my father and grandfather had it; however, over the year I did not pay the attention that I should have to this warning, perhaps if I did, I may not have developed it.
Bit we cannot travel back through time and undo that which we have done so no regrets but a determination to enjoy life and embrace each day.
Food, besides being essential to Life, is one of the pleasures that we can enjoy without doing ourselves harm.
It was this realization that lead me to seeking out foods and recipes that are full of flavour and zest but safe for me to consume.
There have been a few bumps on the way, my love for chocolate and cookies being one. However, sugar free cookies and chocolate are available now all that is needed is to keep the quantity in control and watch the caloric intake.
Weight is an important aspect of diabetes and thus who are seeking to prevent developing diabetes need to pay close attention to what they eat.
There is no need for strict diets but stick to fresh, non-processed foods and try not to overeat; at least on a regular basis.
We are what we eat and consuming whole food rather than pre-packaged over processed foods will make a difference.
My regular food selections incorporate a number of raw food, carrots celery, broccoli and, cauliflower. For example, add an apple, banana, or an orange to this, no more than two servings each day, and my food intake has all the energy that I need to feel strong and vital.
The second thing that I do is exercise. Being overweight I do not mean five or ten pounds, more like 30 or 40, is a potential danger sign. In addition, to planning wise food choices, get regular exercise, at least three times per week, engage in something that you enjoy and that gets the heart beating and blood pumping.
I begin each day with a simple stretching routine. The main purpose of this stretching is to limber my body up and get my mind awake. I do drink coffee but two cups in the morning is my limit. I take it without milk or sugar. Coffee is one of the essential indulgences that make mornings a pleasure to embrace; besides it is a good source of essential fatty acids (EFAs).
I also walk. Walking is an exercise that suits me. I love being outside. Five days a week, I take a 2 mile walk about 45 minutes after breakfast. This is what I refer to as a brisk pace walk. It is designed to get my blood pumping and to be exercise. There are times when I walk, just to be outside and feel the air and smell the roses. The leisure walk serves its own purposes; but it does not provide the physical exercise that I require.
I often go out again in the mid-afternoon or early evening for a second usually shorter but more brisk walk.
When the weather is too nasty to venture out, I do a 20 minute exercise routine that uses stretching and bending routines. I consulted with my family doctor before engaging in this activity. Exercise keeps both the mind and the body sharp. Always check with your family physician before starting out on any exercise routine; what you undertake to heal you may just harm you, so check.
I also use the stairs instead of an elevator or escalator depending upon the floor that I am going to, this adds a bit of unscheduled exercise to my daily routine.
My eating habits have also changed since I was first diagnosed some 16 years ago. Instead of three large meals a day, I usually have six smaller meals spaced over the day. I find that I feel stronger and experience hunger less by eating this way. Being hungry was one of the biggest problems that I used to face; I’d eat a meal of pasta and tomato sauce, a favourite and within 30 minutes I’d be starving.
It took sometime, but I did find out that my passion for pasta was really a passion for tomato sauce. Now one of my favourite dishes is brussel sprouts and tomato sauce; cabbage works well but I do prefer brussel spouts.
A regular breakfast is a bowl of hot organic oatmeal porridge with a half of a banana and skim milk.
Snacks consist of cheese, almonds, a boiled egg, toast and peanut butter; it all depends upon what I have already eaten that day.
Perhaps, the best thing that I do, after meal planning and exercise, is maintaining a positive attitude; my twin passions of gardening and cooking help me unwind and help me to stay focused on what is truly important, each day.
Diabetes Type II
- Type 2 Diabetes: Conditions, Treatments, Resources - American Diabetes Association
Information on type 2 diabetes: diabetes conditions, diabetes treatment, resources from the American Diabetes Association.
Diabetes Type II
- Type 2 diabetes
An outline of the characteristics and symptoms of type 2 diabetes
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