Working closely with your doctor, you can help manage your diabetes by focusing on six key changes in your daily life.
1. Eat healthy. Eating well is crucial when you have diabetes, because what you eat affects your blood sugar. No foods are strictly off-limits. Focus on eating only as much as your body needs. Eat plenty of vegetables, fruits, and whole grains. Choose nonfat dairy and lean meats. Limit foods that are high in sugar and fat. Remember that carbohydrates turn into sugar, so watch...
To help manage your diabetes, you need to spread carbs out more evenly throughout the day. So, for example, a S.M.A.R.T. goal is “I will eat a breakfast containing 45 grams of carbohydrates every day for the next 2 weeks.”
Attainable: Breakfasts with about 45 grams of carbs are very doable. A few options:
1 cup cooked oatmeal (32 grams), 1/2 medium banana (13 grams), a hard-boiled egg, black coffee
2 scrambled eggs, 1 small whole wheat pita (15 grams), 1 orange (18 grams), 1 cup 1% milk (14 grams)
3 rye crispbreads (24 grams), 1/2 cup nonfat cottage cheese (5 grams), 1 cup of blackberries (15 grams)
Relevant: Spreading carbs out is relevant because it helps you curb hunger, so you don’t overeat. To hit 45 grams, you have to plan to eat protein and fat in addition to carbs at a meal. A piece of toast with an egg, for instance, will keep you feeling full longer than two slices of toast with jam. When you’re more satisfied, you’re likely to eat less overall.
Time-bound: This goal will be your focus for 2 weeks. At the end of that time, you can decide if you want to do it again or set a different goal.
Why It Works
Setting S.M.A.R.T. goals helps keep big projects, like losing weight or managing blood sugar, from being overwhelming.
Your steps for success are clearly spelled out so that you know when you’ve met the goal.
The biggest payoff comes from turning short-term goals into long-lasting, healthy habits.