If you suffer from type 2 diabetes and are overweight it is a sure fact that by losing weight you will see positive outcomes in your diabetes management such as: lower blood sugars, lower blood pressure, and you will feel much better.
A National Institutes of Health study found that a combination of diet and exercise cuts the risk of developing diabetes by 58%. And if someone who suffers from diabetes loses just 5-10% of their weight they will significantly reduce their blood sugars. Not only will their blood sugars improve but according to the American Heart Association a weight reduction will also reduce blood pressure, improve cholesterol, improve perceived rate of exertion during activity, and reduce stress on the hips, knees, ankles and feet.
The important thing to remember is that when finding a weight management program you need to find one that is permanent. You need to find a program that implements lifestyle modification that is realistic and sustainable. If you choose to live your life crash dieting and re-gaining you will do more harm than good. For lifestyle modification and permanent change it takes structure, discipline, planning, and problem solving. These are skills that can be learned and implemented with lots practice through the right program.
To start, one first needs to assess their lifestyle. Diabetes.org breaks this down into three sections. (This site also has interactive tools to help you evaluate where you are.)
- Your Current Health - Allows you to establish where you ARE. It is hard to create and institute goals for permanent lifestyle change if you have no idea of where you currently are.
- Assess Your Environment - You are what you surround yourself with. Does your environment encourage or discourage a healthy lifestyle? What can you do to modify your environment?
- Are You Ready? - “It’s hard to teach an old dog new tricks” Changing habits is one of the hardest things to do. Take the Changing Habits Assessment. What did you learn about yourself?