Lifestyle Improvements That Can Help to Control Diabetes

Helping an older adult with diabetes manage their condition and stay healthy requires making some changes to the way they live. There are several things that can influence diabetes management. Experts suggest that the following lifestyle changes are some of the key factors that can help to control diabetes.

Healthy Diet

Eating a balanced diet is a key element for good health regardless of whether a senior has diabetes. However, diabetes makes it doubly important since certain foods can positively or negatively affect blood sugar levels. A diet for diabetes management isn’t restrictive, rather it focuses on balancing what the senior eats to stay within their target blood sugar levels. It should include plenty of vegetables, whole grains, fruits, and low-fat proteins. If you’re uncertain what your aging relative should be eating, ask the doctor for a referral to a dietitian who can help to create an eating plan you can follow. In addition, keeping a log of what the senior eats and the results of their blood sugar checks will let you see how certain foods affect them.

Physical Activity

Staying active helps the body to use blood sugar for energy, so it doesn’t build up in the blood. Physical activity doesn’t necessarily have to involve going to the gym or any specialized equipment. Your older family member can take brisk walks, work in the garden, assist with cleaning the house, or go for a swim. The goal is to get 30 minutes of physical activity on at least 5 days of the week.

Regular Checkups

Diabetes makes it more likely that your aging relative will develop other health problems, like heart disease. For that reason, they should see a doctor at least twice per year. The doctor should regularly check their cholesterol, blood pressure, and A1C. They should also have a complete eye exam yearly.

Follow Medication Instructions

It’s important that the senior and their family caregivers understand the medicines they are taking. They must be used correctly, or they won’t be as effective as they should be. Diabetes medications must be taken in the proper dosages and at the right times of the day to keep the disease under control.

Senior care providers can assist your older family member to make lifestyle changes that will allow them to better control diabetes. Senior care providers can make meals that follow the eating plan suggested by the doctor or dietician. A senior care provider can also help the older adult to get enough exercise by encouraging more movement, such as by going for a walk with them or helping them in the garden. In addition, senior care providers can remind the older adult when it is time to take medicine and drive them to their medical appointments.


If you are considering senior care in Bellbrook, OH, for an aging loved one, please contact the caring staff at Touching Hearts At Home of Dayton today at 937-558-9394.

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