Diabetes is a condition brought on by having too much glucose (sugar) in the blood because the body cannot use it properly. People with diabetes can find they have a greater risk of developing other serious health problems such as heart disease, high blood pressure, nerve damage, circulation problems and damage to the eyes and kidneys.
By controlling blood glucose and blood pressure levels and by taking regular exercise and eating a healthy diet, sufferers can greatly reduce their risk of developing these complications.
Smoking greatly increases the chance of developing serious health problems for diabetes sufferers so it is very important to stop if diagnosed with diabetes.
During the last 10 to 20 years, diabetes care has improved dramatically. Improved screening methods have greatly helped doctors to pick up health problems at an early stage. It is imperative that diabetics have regular medical check ups, at least annually.
Perhaps the most important thing is to follow the treatment plan provided. By maintaining blood sugar at a level as near normal as possible, a diabetes sufferer should not have too many problems. Blood glucose levels are measured in millimols per litre of blood – mmol/l for short.
A level of 4 – 7 mmol/l prior to meals is what a diabetic should be aiming for, with a level no higher than 10 mmol/l two hours after food. There are various products available for monitoring blood glucose levels and a doctor or diabetic nurse can give advice about these.
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