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Women’s Top Diabetes Concerns

WebMD Feature

Managing type 2 diabetes means being good to yourself.

Diabetes requires self-care to do it well,” says Robin Goland, MD, diabetes research director at New York-Presbyterian Hospital. “While many women are comfortable at taking care of others, it can be hard for them to take care of themselves.”

Your first line of defense is a healthy diet and exercise plan, so talk to your doctor about creating one that will likely include:

  • Getting at least 30 minutes of physical activity on most days. Anything that gets your heart rate up and causes you to sweat a little is beneficial, even if it’s gardening, walking, or cleaning your house.
  • Eating foods that will keep your blood sugar levels in check. That means choosing high-fiber foods, swapping out white starchy foods for whole grains, putting lots of vegetables on your plate, and steering clear of sweetened beverages, including fruit juice.

Ask your doctor who else can help you, like a nutritionist or a diabetes specialist.

Protect Your Heart

Having diabetes makes heart disease more likely. That's all the more reason to follow your doctor's guidelines about diet and exercise.

Also, track your blood pressure, says OB/GYN and diabetes educator Cassandra Henderson, MD, of New York’s Lincoln Hospital and Albert Einstein College of Medicine.

Keeping your cholesterol levels in check will also help protect your heart.

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