Type 2 Diabetes Treatments

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To avoid complications from type 2 diabetes, you can take steps to keep your blood sugar levels within a normal range. You'll need to check your sugar-- called "glucose"-- regularly, eat healthy foods, lose weight if you need to, get regular exercise, and take medications if your doctor prescribes them. You'll use a monitor called a "glucometer" to check your blood sugar levels often.

First, you prick your finger with a small needle called a "lancet" and place a drop of blood on a strip of paper in the glucometer. Based on what the monitor tells you, you may need to adjust your meals, exercise, or medication dose. Eating a healthy diet helps lower your blood sugar, and that means eating lots of fruits and vegetables along with whole grains and lean protein-- like fish or chicken.

You'll want to eat the right kind of carbs and stay away from high-sugar foods. Having meals and snacks about the same time every day helps, too. Getting regular exercise, even just walking 30 minutes a day, will lower your blood glucose levels and help your body use insulin better.

You may need to take one or more medications to help lower your blood sugar. Some of these drugs help the pancreas make more insulin while others help your body use the insulin it makes.

And some reduce the amount of glucose in your body.

If diet, exercise, and these medications aren't enough to control your blood sugar levels, your doctor may prescribe insulin. You'll learn how to inject it-- just under your skin. By keeping your blood sugar in check, you can prevent the complications of type 2 diabetes and live a healthy life.