With 1 in 9 adults living with diabetes, South Africa has one of the highest diabetes prevalence in Africa. Diabetes prevalence in South Africa has reached 11.3%. Just under half (45.4%) of people with diabetes remain undiagnosed in South Africa. One in three (13 million) adults in South Africa have impaired fasting glucose (IFG), which places them at highest risk for type 2 diabetes.
This the highest IFG prevalence in the world!
Managing diabetes can be stressful.
You are unique and your body may react differently to medication and lifestyle interventions. Having a partner that guides you in the right direction with the necessary skills and know how, helps you to easily navigate through life whilst living with diabetes. A skilled dietitian, knowledgeable in the field of Diabetes will do just that. You may need a lot of encouragement and knowledge. We aim to empower and educate you to manage your Diabetes in the most effective way possible.
Understaning Diabetes: Diabetes is a condition where the body is unable to metabolize glucose sufficiently leading to high blood glucose. We call it hyperglycemia. You either have a lack of insulin (Type 1 diabetes) or your body still produces insulin, but your insulin is not doing a good job (Type 2 diabetes).
To effectively manage your diabetes, your blood glucose needs to be maintained between 4 – 8 mmol/L, requiring you to test regularly. If you don’t test yourself at home, to see what your values are daily, it is like riding a car without a speedometer. You will never know how fast you are going…
Make sure you have a glucometer to test yourself. We hand out glucometer free of charge at our offices and will be able to show you how to best test your blood glucose and when it is required to test. Generally, it is best to test early morning on an empty stomach and 2 hours after a meal.
There is a balance between the medication that you take for your diabetes and your lifestyle and diet.
Managing diabetes can have a significant impact on overall health and well-being.
By keeping blood sugar levels within a healthy range, people with diabetes can reduce the risk of complications such as heart disease, kidney disease, nerve damage, and eye damage. A healthy range for blood glucose levels is between 4 – 8 mmol/L.
Proper diabetes management can also improve energy levels, mood, and quality of life. This may include regular physical activity, a healthy diet that is low in sugar and refined carbohydrates, monitoring blood sugar levels, taking medication as prescribed, and working with a healthcare professional to develop a personalized diabetes management plan.
With proper management, people with diabetes can live healthy, fulfilling lives and reduce the risk of long-term complications.
The treatment of diabetes involves a combination of:
Monitoring of blood sugar levels.
Lifestyle changes may include regular physical activity, a healthy diet that is low in sugar and refined carbohydrates, and maintaining a healthy weight.
Medications may include insulin injections, oral medications that help regulate blood sugar levels, and other medications to manage complications such as high blood pressure and high cholesterol.
Monitoring blood sugar levels regularly is also an important part of diabetes treatment, as it can help people with diabetes make informed decisions about their diet, physical activity, and medication use.
Working with a dietitian to develop a personalized diabetes management plan is essential for effective treatment and long-term health.
Managing diabetes can be challenging, as it requires ongoing attention and lifestyle changes.
Some of the challenges of managing diabetes include monitoring blood sugar levels regularly, taking medication as prescribed, following a healthy diet that is low in sugar and refined carbohydrates, and engaging in regular physical activity.
Diabetes management can also be affected by other factors such as stress, illness, and changes in routine. In addition, people with diabetes may experience complications such as nerve damage, kidney disease, and eye damage, which can further complicate diabetes management.
However, with proper education, support, and self-care, people with diabetes can overcome these challenges and successfully manage their condition to improve their overall health and well-being.
A carbohydrate-controlled diet can be effective for managing diabetes, as it can help regulate blood sugar levels and reduce the risk of complications.
By controlling carbohydrate intake, people with diabetes can avoid spikes in blood sugar levels and achieve better blood sugar control.
This may include monitoring carbohydrate intake and portion sizes and learning how to count your carbs.
However, it is important to work with a dietitian to develop a personalized carbohydrate-controlled diet plan that meets individual needs and preferences. In some cases, medication or insulin may also be necessary to manage blood sugar levels effectively.