Diabetes is a chronic condition that requires you to take extra care of yourself throughout the year. But there are certain months when your risk of succumbing to it becomes high and therefore you need to know the effective arsenals against diabetes. We all know that stress and inactivity are two main culprits behind the increase in blood sugar level. And, during winters, it becomes challenging for you not to put stress on your body and keep it moving. That’s when your body goes into fight-or-flight mode. This leads to the excessive release of adrenaline and cortisol hormones that are harmful to diabetics. Also, in a bid to gather energy for daily activities, your body starts releasing glucose and that increases your blood sugar level.Also Read - Diabetes Increases The Risk Of COVID-19: Here Are Steps To Protect Your Health
“In 2016, an estimated 1.6 million deaths were directly caused by diabetes. Another 2.2 million deaths were attributable to high blood glucose in 2012”, says the WHO. It also states that “the number of people with diabetes rose from 108 million in 1980 to 422 million in 2014.” This is only the result of the ineffective management of diabetes. Therefore, here we share 10 naturopathy and yoga tips that can help people with diabetes during the cold season. Also Read - People With Eye Disease, Diabetes At 5-Fold Risk of Severe COVID-19: Study
A well-balanced diet is crucial to keep diabetes in control no matter the season. It is recommended to include plenty of vegetables, fruits, whole grains, lentils, beans, and oatmeal. Sweets and fatty foods should be avoided. Also, diabetics should refrain from consuming dry fruits as the fructose in them may spike the sugar level. Also Read - Here's Why You Should Have Green Tea If You Have Type 2 Diabetes
2. Sufficient Hydration
It is essential to keep the body hydrated at all times to get rid of the excess glucose through urine. Water should be the primary beverage choice as other beverages are loaded with preservatives and sugar.
The ancient practice of yoga can work wonders on the body, helping people with diabetes to keep the disease under control and lead a normal, happy life. Science has shown that specific yoga poses that involve the twisting and stretching of the internal muscles and organs stimulate the pancreas and endocrine system. This facilitates insulin secretion, which keeps the blood glucose levels under check.
4. Alternative Treatments
Alternative treatment methods like acupuncture, physiotherapy, hydrotherapy, etc., can restore harmony to the body in several ways. Acupuncture, where thin needles inserted into specific points in the body, can help with weight loss, control blood sugar levels, and reduce insulin resistance. Physiotherapy and hydrotherapy promote neurological and musculoskeletal functions that aids in weight loss, reduces stress levels, and lowers blood pressure.
5. Proper Sleep
Sound sleep is vital as the body relies on it to repair itself from exposure to toxins, daily stressors, and much more. Diabetics should aim for at least 6-7 hours of continuous sleep daily to let the body recuperate from damages and boost the immune system.
6. Mental Health
Those affected with diabetes live with a lot of stress. It can cause spurts of anxiety, mood change, confusion, and depression. The American Diabetes Association says that Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) may occur during winters; however, it is treatable. Spending time with loved ones, indulging in hobbies, or getting professional help are some of the ways through which diabetics can find relief.
7. Personal Hygiene
To maintain personal hygiene, people with diabetes should wash their hands frequently and thoroughly with a natural soap. Apart from that, saline rinses using a Neti pot should also be practiced as it keeps the respiratory passages clear.
8. Lose Weight
Obesity can increase the risk of developing type 2 diabetes by 80-85 percent. For people with obesity, the pancreas cannot produce enough insulin to meet the body’s needs. Therefore, losing weight becomes the only option to stay healthy and fit. Regular exercise, brisk walks, etc., should be incorporated into daily life to get rid of excess weight.
9. Avoid Immune Suppressing Foods
Diabetics should stay away from high-fat food, alcohol, caffeine, and white sugar, suppressing the immune system’s effects. Too much high-fat foods can block the lymphatic system, hindering the body’s ability to fight infections.
10. Spend Time Outdoors
Spending time outdoors or in nature not only boosts mood but also increases Vitamin D levels in the body. Vitamin D is an essential component that enhances the body’s ability to recognise pathogens and come up with a response against them, especially influenza.
Diabetes care is complex and it goes well beyond glucose control. Physical activity, healthy eating, and maintain proper body weight are crucial factors in preventing, managing, and reversing diabetes. Naturopathy explores a wide range of factors to determine which ones should be prioritized and how they can be modified to aid diabetics to effectively manage their condition during the winter season.