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5 Ways to Simplify Life with Diabetes

5 Ways to Simplify Life with Diabetes

According to the American Diabetes Association, 29 million people in the United States have diabetes. And with 1.4 million new cases diagnosed each year, it’s a public health problem that has in recent years become an epidemic. For those who live with diabetes on a daily basis, many aspects of their lives can dramatically change. Checking blood sugar levels several times per day, eating a much healthier diet, and taking insulin shots or other medications all become part of the daily routine. However, while this all sounds very complicated, the good news is that there are many ways living with diabetes can be greatly simplified. If you or a family member have diabetes, here are five ways that are guaranteed to make day-to-day living much easier.

Have a Support System

Because diabetes can take a toll on many aspects of one’s life, it’s important to have a strong support network to lean on from time to time. While it’s always good to have in-person support, more and more people are turning to online sites to meet others who share their problems. One site that has become popular this year is UpWell, a one-stop-shop that brings together various services, tools, and education focusing on chronic conditions such as diabetes. Offering such aspects as personalized support from wellness coaches, prescription services to ensure a person’s medications are filled on time, menu guides, fitness routines, and much more, this site is one online resource that helps solve numerous problems.

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Keep a Food Diary

For people who have trouble keeping track of what they eat, a food diary can prove to be very helpful. Along with keeping track of what foods are eaten, the food diary can also show what triggers poor dietary habits. For example, many diabetics may make poor eating choices when they are emotionally upset or tired at the end of the day. By being able to recognize the signs of trouble, they will be able to make much better choices and manage their condition much more effectively.

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Drink More Water

One of the simplest things you can do to make living with diabetes much easier, drinking water can keep you hydrated, which can be a key factor in ensuring your kidneys also stay healthy. If you prefer, you can also include tea, coffee, mineral water, and other low-calorie drinks in your diet. By consuming between 6-8 cups of these fluids daily, you’ll not only stay hydrated, but also have more energy and keep your weight in check.

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Exercise Regularly

Along with eating a balanced diet and drinking plenty of the right fluids, getting enough exercise is also a great way to make living with diabetes much simpler. While this may sound difficult considering people’s busy personal and work schedules, it’s actually easier than you may think. Needing only 20-30 minutes several times per week, this can be achieved in numerous ways. Whether it’s taking a walk on your lunch break, riding a bike around the neighborhood with your kids, or playing golf or tennis with your friends on the weekend, making exercise a priority will pay off in many great ways.

Take Medications as Directed

Whether you’re on insulin, taking other medications, or a combination of these, making sure you follow your doctor’s instructions for taking your medications is vital to your overall health. If you find yourself skipping doses of medication, you are putting your health at risk. Rather than risk dangerous health complications, be sure to talk with your doctor if you have any questions regarding dosages, side effects, or other concerns about your medication regimen. For example, if you’re taking certain vitamins, herbs, or other natural supplements, be sure to let your doctor know so that you won’t risk having any unexpected drug interactions.

By incorporating these and other steps into your day-to-day living, you’ll find it much easier to live with diabetes. While this chronic disease may affect your life in numerous ways, it by no means should keep you from doing virtually anything you wish. Whether it’s properly taking your medications or getting plenty of exercise, taking the necessary steps to simplify your life with diabetes will pay off for many years to come.

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Last Updated on December 2, 2018

How to Flow Your Way to a More Productive Life

How to Flow Your Way to a More Productive Life

Ebb and flow. Contraction and expansion. Highs and lows. It’s all about the cycles of life.

The entire course of our life follows this up and down pattern of more and then less. Our days flow this way, each following a pattern of more energy, then less energy, more creativity and periods of greater focus bookended by moments of low energy when we cringe at the thought of one more meeting, one more call, one more sentence.

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The key is in understanding how to use the cycles of ebb and flow to our advantage. The ability to harness these fluctuations, understand how they affect our productivity and mood and then apply that knowledge as a tool to improve our lives is a valuable strategy that few individuals or corporations have mastered.

Here are a few simple steps to start using this strategy today:

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Review Your Past Flow

Take just a few minutes to look back at how your days and weeks have been unfolding. What time of the day are you the most focused? Do you prefer to be more social at certain times of the day? Do you have difficulty concentrating after lunch or are you energized? Are there days when you can’t seem to sit still at your desk and others when you could work on the same project for hours?

Do you see a pattern starting to emerge? Eventually you will discover a sort of map or schedule that charts your individual productivity levels during a given day or week.  That’s the first step. You’ll use this information to plan your days going forward.

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Schedule According to Your Flow Pattern

Look at the types of things you do each day…each week. What can you move around so that it’s a better fit for you? Can you suggest to your team that you schedule meetings for late morning if you can’t stand to be social first thing? Can you schedule detailed project work or highly creative tasks, like writing or designing when you are best able to focus? How about making sales calls or client meetings on days when you are the most social and leaving billing or reports until another time when you are able to close your door and do repetitive tasks.

Keep in mind that everyone is different and some things are out of our control. Do what you can. You might be surprised at just how flexible clients and managers can be when they understand that improving your productivity will result in better outcomes for them.

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Account for Big Picture Fluctuations

Look at the bigger picture. Consider what happens during different months or times during the year. Think about what is going on in the other parts of your life. When is the best time for you to take on a new project, role or responsibility? Take into account other commitments that zap your energy. Do you have a sick parent, a spouse who travels all the time or young children who demand all of your available time and energy?

We all know people who ignore all of this advice and yet seem to prosper and achieve wonderful success anyway, but they are usually the exception, not the rule. For most of us, this habitual tendency to force our bodies and our brains into patterns of working that undermine our productivity result in achieving less than desired results and adding more stress to our already overburdened lives.

Why not follow the ebb and flow of your life instead of fighting against it?

    Featured photo credit: Nathan Dumlao via unsplash.com

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