Celebrated every year on November 14, World Diabetes Day was launched by the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) and the World Health Organization in 1991. The day was launched to address the issue of rapidly increasing number of diabetes patient across the world and to raise awareness about the condition. Events and programs are organized on this day by health organizations and companies focused on year’s theme. This year, the theme for World Diabetes Day is Women and diabetes. Many activities are arranged on this day to inform people about the condition and screen for the condition. Diabetes is a metabolic disorder that affects the body’s insulin production, which in turn affect the level of blood sugar. If not treated, the condition can lead to other complications like foot ulcer, cardiovascular diseases and eye damage. There are three types of diabetes, which are gestational diabetes, type 1and type 2. Gestational diabetes occurs in pregnant women when the level of blood sugar increases during pregnancy. In type 1, insulin is not produced in sufficient amount by the pancreas. This condition is also called as juvenile diabetes or insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus. Type 2 diabetes is the condition where the body doesn’t respond to insulin. It starts with insulin resistance. This condition is also known as adult-onset diabetes or non insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus. If you are in high risk group, you can make changes in your lifestyle to lower the risk. According to a study conducted in 2008, you can lower the risk of diabetes by 58 percent by changing your lifestyle as compared to lowering the risk by 31 percent by using metformin, an anti-diabetes drug. Here are some tips to prevent diabetes or lower the risk of developing the condition. (ALSO READ World Diabetes Day 2017: These are the Early Symptoms of Diabetes).

1. Eat more fiber

The most important step to prevent or lower the risk of diabetes is to have a healthy diet. Eat more fiber to improve the blood sugar levels. You can eat whole grains, vegetables, fruits, nuts and beans. Avoid consuming pre-packed and processed foods or foods that are high in cholesterol and unhealthy fat. Here is a list of foods that are rich in healthy fat.

2. Exercise

If you are not physically active, it can increase the risk of diabetes. Get more exercise as it will help you to lose weight, improve sensitivity to insulin and lower blood sugar levels. According to research, regular exercising, like resistance training and aerobics, can help control the blood sugar level and diabetes.

3. Lower your stress

Stress can lead to many health issues. Stress hormones are released when you are stressed and these hormones can increase the sugar levels in your blood. Try yoga or meditation to stay calm.

4. Avoid excessive alcohol intake

Excess intake of alcohol can increase the risk of developing diabetes, as per the Harvard School of Public Health. However, drinking alcohol in moderation can help the body to utilize glucose present in your body more effectively.

5. Quit smoking

As per the Harvard School of Public Health, the chances of developing type 2 diabetes is 50 percent more if you are a smoker as compared to the non-smokers. You can lower the risk of diabetes by quitting smoking.

It is important to talk to your doctor about your concerns. Your doctor will be able to provide more suggestions to keep diabetes at bay.