Your exact treatment will depend on the type of diabetes you have. In general, your care will involve getting lab tests, having visits with your healthcare provider, changing your diet to include healthy meals and snacks, increasing your physical activity, taking prescribed medications, and for most patients – home glucose monitoring.
Staying physically active and getting the recommended amount of exercise of 30 minutes a day for at least five days per week, can help lower your blood glucose. Also, if you are insulin resistant, exercise helps your body recognize and use insulin more effectively to push glucose into your cells for energy, where it belongs. Check first with your doctor before you start any new activities or exercises.
Limiting the amount of carbohydrates, you eat at meal and snack times as recommended by your physician and diabetes educator can also help prevent increases in your blood glucose. Carb counting is an integral part of diabetes care, along with pairing your carbs with lean protein to prevent spikes in blood glucose.
Losing weight if you are overweight, can also help your body recognize and use insulin better if you are diagnosed with insulin resistance.
A brief overview of some additional and typical treatments for each type of diabetes is below:
Type 1: If you have T1D, you will be prescribed insulin. This is a medication that is injected into the skin.
Type 2: If you have T2D you will most likely be prescribed one or more oral medications. Sometimes people with T2D are also prescribed insulin. If you are overweight, you will be advised to lose weight.
Gestational: Some (not all) moms may need insulin during their pregnancy to help control their blood glucose. Eating a healthy diet to prevent excessive weight gain and prevent spikes in your blood sugar is strongly recommended, as it is for other types of diabetes. It is advised to increase your physical activity and get daily exercise to stay healthy, help maintain weight, and help control your blood glucose. You will need to monitor your blood glucose with a home glucose monitor on a schedule advised by your doctor. Your baby is also a patient – your health care provider will work with you to help ensure your baby remains healthy during your pregnancy and during and after birth.
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