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Tips for Living with Type 2 Diabetes

Type 2-Diabetes is a problem with the body that causes blood sugar levels to rise. We take in sugar in the form of carbohydrates. We need this sugar on a daily basis for energy, for our brain, muscles, and organs. Habitual high sugar intake paired with a sedentary lifestyle reduces the body’s ability to filter sugar out of the blood, leading to damaging effects from high blood sugar. This overloads our pancreas, which is the organ that produces insulin. Insulin is the hormone that allows sugar into the cells of our body. What we need to do is balance the carbohydrates each day, and each meal, to ensure we do not overload our body.

The question is can you reverse Type 2-Diabetes? The answer is, to some degree yes. How can you do this? Well it doesn’t happen quickly, and it is important to do this with the counsel of your physician and a registered dietitian. By changing your diet lifestyle you can reduce the amount of sugar that is in your blood, and over time, reduce how much medicine you need to take. I will give you some basic tips that can help start the change.

Do you drink soda, sweet tea, or sugar with your coffee? If so, stop! Yes, that is sometimes hard to hear, but all liquid calories do not satisfy us, and they are the quickest way your sugar levels rise. Habitual high sugar intake especially of sugary drinks puts a lot of stress on the pancreas. By changing to sugar free drinks like Crystal Light, or fruit infused water, you will dramatically drop the amount of sugar and calories you consume. This in turn will lighten the load that the pancreas takes on and can allow the insulin in our body to catch up. And you could lose a little bit of weight in the process!

Always remember that non starchy vegetables (anything but potatoes, corn, and peas) have very little sugar, or carbohydrates, so making half of your meals consist of those items will ensure you have a healthy, nutrient rich, carbohydrate consistent meal. These items have high levels of fiber. Fiber slows down how fast we digest food, thus causing a delay in how high our sugar level rises in the blood. A delay in rise of sugar can allow time for insulin to grab the sugar, put it into cells, and

drop the amount of sugar in our blood.

You can start your next step in a healthier lifestyle by coming to one of the Work Out Help Out events that are held every Saturday. WOHO offers great low sugar snacks that not only help satisfy your hunger after working out, but also are a great benefit on the sugar load in our body. WOHO not only takes care of your fitness needs, but also whole body health- while serving others! For more tips and recipes visit American Diabetes Association online to help support your healthy lifestyle with Type 2-Diabetes.

Spenser Parker is a Registered Dietitian and is a nutrition consultant for Work Out Help Out. As a Registered Dietitian, Spenser has undergone extensive training and education to understand how nutrition affects the human body. Spenser has completed a Bachelor's in Dietetics at Brigham Young University in Utah and a dietetic internship through Baptist Health System.

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