Festive season is best part of the year. Fun times with family and friends bring everyone happiness. Last 2-3 months of the year sees a lot of festivals including Diwali, Christmas and New Year. This Diwali, I realised, festive season also brings lots of preparations from deep cleaning to decorations and we have to change our daily routine to get everything done on time.
Being a caretaker to a person with diabetes, I felt diabetes management is getting tougher during festive season. But it is very important to keep one’s glucose levels in the normal range to enjoy the festivities with friends and family.
Festivities need some extra preparation to make it an amazing experience for people with diabetes. It helped that I attended a Facebook session on effective diabetes management where I learnt all about healthy meal choices, exercises and the importance of glucose monitoring. Sharing what I learnt about managing diabetes can be useful for upcoming festive and holiday season too.
Managing Diabetes During Diwali.
- Keep a check on your diet – Festivals include feasts for everyone. To prevent your glucose levels getting you stressed, always indulge in low carb and natural sugar food items. So, this Diwali we avoided sugar laden and deep fried food and included healthy snacks and natural sweetener like dates and jaggery based sweets.
- Check your portion size – Heavy uncontrolled feasting can lead to health issues, hence, eating in moderation is important for diabetes management. Instead of one big meal, I planned small meals for entire family, that way we enjoyed the festival together. Make sure to not skip meals, as this can negatively impact glucose levels.
- Choose your beverages wisely – Avoid sugary drinks always. During festive season when beverages are served very often choose fresh fruit juices or sugar free lime water over carbonated drinks. Use natural sweetener in tea or coffee. And never forget that a glass of milk before bedtime, will help in maintaining sugar levels till early morning.
- Eat fibre rich food – Fibre rich food like oats, apples etc help in regulating blood glucose levels. During festive season make sure your food includes proper nutrients and fibre. Also, limit intake of carb rich food as it impacts your glucose levels the most. A plate full of salad during meals and a plate full of fruits as snacks always help.
- Exercise daily – No matter how busy your day ahead, always start the day with exercise and yoga, to burn some calories and maintain glucose levels. Try to stick to your routine as much as possible.
- Never skip your medications – Medicines plays an important role in regulating blood glucose levels. Make sure you always keep a check on your medications. Keep them handy, in case you are out for some work and make sure you have your medicines as prescribed.
- Monitor your Glucose Levels – During the festive time, it’s very important to keep a check on your blood glucose level and enjoy your favourite food items accordingly. Continuous Glucose Monitoring systems make monitoring glucose levels easy. With Continuous Glucose Monitoring devices, like Freestyle libre, you can check your glucose levels without any pain or prick, see trends, and accordingly adjust food intake and ensure that your glucose levels are in optimal range throughout the day. In fact, attaching the sensor to the upper arm is very easy. The reader is used to scan the sensor and get the reading. It’s very convenient, hassle-free and discrete to use, especially when you are outdoors or at a party. It also helps you to understand how any food, medicines or activity impacts on your glucose levels and makes managing it easier.
- Talk to your doctor – Right guidance is always helpful. Make sure to talk to your doctor before the festive season and make plans accordingly, so that you can enjoy the festive season with your family. Well-balanced diet, continuous glucose monitoring, and exercise along with a few precautions as mentioned above help a person with diabetes better manage their condition, even during the festive season.
Role of continuous glucose monitoring technology in managing diabetes
Managing diabetes is possible through the right diet and nutrition and maintaining a physically active lifestyle. Fluctuating glucose levels can be a constant source of concern and stress. That’s why it is necessary to know what are the changes, that you can make in your lifestyle that can help you manage your levels better.
Continuous Glucose Monitoring devices device make monitoring sugar levels every few minutes possible and the best part is there is no finger pricking involved. CGM devices, once used, monitor your blood glucose levels at regular intervals and you can also use
it to see the impact of different food items and exercises on your blood glucose level and help you plan a better food and exercise routine for a healthy living.
Diabetes care and management are very doable when you are constantly monitoring your blood sugar levels, eating nutritious foods, and getting adequate exercise.
CGM devices like Free Style Libre are hassle free, convenient, easy to use, gives accurate results and you can keep a track of your blood glucose levels on the go. I have used it as a caregiver and would recommend it to everyone wanting to monitor their glucose levels with ease and without pain.
The information mentioned in this document is only suggestive/for patient education and shall not be considered as a substitute for doctor’s advice or recommendations from Abbott. Please consult your doctor for more information.
Any photos displayed are for illustrative purposes only. Any person depicted in such photos is a model.