Partnering with Abbott to share more on #LivingFullyWithDiabetes
Glucose Monitoring Device
Diabetes is one of the largest global health challenges in the present times and is a growing concern in India with an estimated 8.7% diabetic population in the age group between 20 and 70 years. 1 Among the top 10 countries in the world, India stands second with 69.2 million people with diabetes and another 36.5 million with prediabetes. It is mostly due to the rapid urbanization, sedentary lifestyles, and unhealthy diets leading to obesity which poses an important risk factor for diabetes. 1,2
Diabetes management requires awareness and knowing what makes one’s blood sugar level rise and fall. This can be achieved by learning the different types of diabetes, regular and proper glucose monitoring, and taking care of one’s diet, nutrition, and exercise, along with medication that your doctor would have prescribed for you.
There are two types of diabetes, namely Type 1 diabetes and Type 2 diabetes.
To ensure that the blood glucose levels of people with diabetes are under check, it is necessary that people with diabetes are equally involved in the decision-making process. This is because changes may include modifications to lifestyle or diet-related requirements. Additionally, since high blood glucose levels do not usually produce any symptoms, monitoring remains a critical component of diabetes management.
If you are unable to control your blood glucose levels and are not able to manage diabetes well, it can put you at risk of other ailments.
Recently, I had the opportunity to attend an event on Living Fully with Diabetes with the well-known actor, model, and TV personality Jay Bhanushali. The event discussed Jay Bhanushali’s first-hand experience as a caregiver to his mom’s ten-year diabetes journey. What caught my attention was how he explained in detail the importance of how a continuous glucose monitoring system help monitor glucose levels effectively.
Here is what I learned.
When you are prone to fluctuating glucose levels, it can be a constant source of concern and stress. Hence, it is essential to know which changes you can make in your lifestyle that can help you manage your levels better.
To know what changes to make, you must first understand what makes your glucose levels increase and decrease. Here are some important factors that affect glucose levels:
Healthy eating is a cornerstone of glucose management. It's not only the type of food you eat but also how much you eat and the combinations of food types you eat. Learn about portion control and make every meal well-balanced. Talk to your doctor, nurse, or dietitian about the best food choices and the appropriate balance of food types.
- Staying Active
Physical activity is another important part of your diabetes management plan and an active lifestyle helps you control and manage your glucose levels better. Talk to your doctor about an exercise plan and schedule. Stay hydrated because dehydration can affect blood sugar levels.
- Stress Management
If you are stressed, it can make you forget to take your medication or eat on time. Learn relaxation techniques and activities like deep breathing and yoga and make it part of your daily routine to keep stress at bay. Get help if need be.
- Proper Glucose Monitoring
During the last two years when the whole world was affected by the pandemic, we were constrained to be indoors, and getting the right medicines, maintaining a healthy diet and exercise regime, and obtaining the right monitoring devices were strenuous. Stepping out to a diagnostic center wasn’t an option anymore and the daily pricking for checking the blood glucose level was our only option. For someone, who should constantly monitor the fluctuation in blood sugar levels, this can be a traumatic experience.
That’s when CGM or Continuous Glucose Monitor becomes our guardian spirit. The CGM devices collect readings day and night and help detect trends and patterns that give you and your doctor a more complete picture of your diabetes.
Always opt for using a simple yet highly effective continuous glucose monitoring to monitor how your stress levels can impact glucose levels.
Here are the things to be kept in mind by a caregiver:
- Well-balanced meals, which include lean protein, vegetables, healthy fats, and whole grains, are good to manage blood sugar
- Blood glucose levels should be checked on a regular basis, especially for the elderly. You may need to test, before meals and snacks and before and after exercise. It is recommended that you speak to your doctor for any advice or medication.
- Exercise is one of the key ways to manage diabetes as it helps regulate your blood sugar levels.
- If you observe any changes in your sugar levels or any other symptoms, it is important to consult your doctor immediately.
Glucose Monitoring Device
During the event, Jay Bhanushali talked about his choice of the glucose monitoring device. He spoke about Freestyle Libre by Abbott especially because it was comfortable, easy to wear and use. As we know, introducing new technology to senior citizens is complicated, but this CGM device is as easy as pie. The device has many benefits:
- Record dangerously low overnight blood sugar levels, which often go undetected
- Track high levels between meals
- Show early morning spikes in blood sugar
- Evaluate how diet and exercise affect you
- Determine if your treatment plan works on a day-to-day basis
- It’s easy to use, I can get those readings and the report can be shared with my doctor. This helps us make decisions be it with the lifestyle or diet change
- The data accuracy helps immensely with doctor-patient communication. The device has transformed our diabetes management experience. All I have to worry about is a scan, and the product takes care of everything else.
- One can also use Freestyle Libre while traveling and that’s a boon.
- It’s also water-proof, so no need to worry while you take a bath or enjoy a swim
Diabetes care and management are very doable when you are constantly monitoring your blood sugar levels, eating nutritious foods, and getting adequate exercise.
Know more about FreeStyle Libre and Continuous Glucose Monitoring Device, click here.
You can buy FreeStyle Libre here.
- WHO: https://www.who.int/india/Campaigns/and/events/world-diabetes-day