According to the NHS, many people have type-2 diabetes without even realising.
The lifelong condition – which causes the level of sugar (glucose) in the blood to increase – affects a whopping 3.7m Brits.
So how do you reduce type-2 diabetes symptoms?
Most people need medicine to control their condition, but there are plenty of ways to keep your blood sugar levels as normal as possible.
Speaking exclusively to Dr Sarah Brewer, who works with CuraLin, a Diabetes Supplement, there are four ways to manage this naturally.
1. Reduce stress
It is important to take time out to relax and address any causes of stress in your life.
While having type-2 diabetes can be stressful in itself, try and focus on taking charge – it’s when you feel out of control that feelings of stress build.
Focus on improving your diet and lifestyle, as well as losing weight one small step at a time.
2. Cut down on sugar and stodgy foods
Following a healthy, Mediterranean style diet can improve glucose control, Dr Sarah claims.
This diet includes fruit, vegetables, fish, beans, nuts and seeds, while cutting back on sweet and carbohydrate-laden snacks.
Dark chocolate and cocoa are healthy options when you need a treat.
3. Stay active
Exercise helps to improve insulin resistance and burn off some excess glucose as fuel.
Ditch the car and walk or cycle as much as you can. Aim to walk briskly for at least 30 minutes on most days to achieve at least 150 minutes exercise per week.
Try to include strength exercises two or more times per week. If a weight-bearing exercise is difficult, consider swimming or yoga.
Ask your doctor if they are able to “prescribe” exercise for you.
4. Stay optimistic
Focus on positives rather than negatives and engage in acts of kindness.
If you live alone, consider adopting an animal companion in need of a new home.
Caring for a pet can enrich your days, giving a sense of optimism and safeguarding you from loneliness and isolation.
The NHS advises you to see a GP if:
- You have any symptoms of type-2 diabetes
- You’re worried you may have a higher risk of getting it
Alternatively, you must keep an eye on the following symptoms.
1. Excessive thirst: Feeling constantly thirsty is one of the most common symptoms of diabetes. It’s usually coupled with dryness in the mouth and can be one of the first signs to develop.
2. Insatiable hunger: A sudden increase in appetite, particularly sweet cravings, can also be a symptom of the condition. This is because of the really high or really low blood sugar levels.
3. Slow healing: The disease makes healing more difficult due to high blood glucose levels.
4. Skin issues: You might experience skin dryness and itchiness or darkening of the skin (acanthosis nigricans). This is due to circulation problems.
5. Sleep issues: People with diabetes often experience problems getting to sleep and remaining asleep. This can be caused by pain, discomfort, the need to urinate, Restless Leg Syndrome, and sleep apnea.