Winters can make people less active with the chilly weather and good food around. While getting out of the cosy bed is an effort during winter, being sedentary can be quite damaging in the cold months and can especially prove to be problematic for people with diabetes. Our metabolism is usually good in winter season and the weather offers perfect opportunity to shed weight. All one has to do is to step out in the sunshine and focus on their workouts. Beginning your day with 30-minute exercise can help manage blood sugar levels. Getting a flu shot and adding seasonal and nutritious foods to your diet can help build your immunity against diseases. Intake of fluids should also go up for people with diabetes as one may tend to drink less water during winters. (Also read: Diabetes: Best root vegetables to control your blood sugar levels)
Dr. Loveleena – Consultant – Diabetologist at Dr. Mohan’s Diabetes Specialities Centre suggests some amazing tips for people with diabetes to manage blood sugar levels during the winter months and keeping those winter blues away
Keep your body warm
A little exercise every day for at least 30 minutes helps to improve your insulin sensitivity, allowing the body to better regulate sugar levels, keep you warm, and can even improve your mood. Keep an eye on your blood sugar levels, mainly if you use insulin. Less exercise can lead to poor glycemic control during winter so do not skip walking due to bad weather.
There are lots of ways to get active without even leaving your home. For example, yoga, climbing the stairs a few times, dancing and even cleaning the room.
Uncontrolled diabetes can lead to serious complications. When you are sick, it is difficult to control your diabetes. Follow the sick day rules if you get a cold, virus or flu and develop ketones. To stay healthy during the winter, ensure that you have taken flu shot, sleep for at least 7-8 hours a day, wash your hands frequently, stay home if you are ill and consult with the doctor immediately.
Keep an eye on your calorie intake for all the foods that you are eating. Adjust your insulin dosage according to your diet. Soups and stews packed with vegetables can help you stay warm and are frequently good choices. It is preferable to avoid hot beverages with added sugars and instead choose for healthy soups. Avoid eating high-calorie foods like pizza, pasta and premade frozen foods. Add more veggies and fruit to each meal. Drink plenty of water. It helps to avoid dehydration.
In cold weather, people with diabetes need to take care of their feet properly. Avoid leaving your feet too close to heaters or soaking them in boiling water since this can cause burns or ulcers. Instead, moisturise and check your feet frequently.
“Guarding against the winter blues will help in managing your blood sugar. Avoid exposing drugs to extreme temperatures. Warm your hands before testing in the glucometer to avoid readings. Following the above tips will help to keep your body and mind healthy all winter and the rest of the year too,” says Dr Loveleena.