Diabetic Home Care and Monitoring (cont.)
Robert Ferry Jr., MD
Robert Ferry Jr., MD, is a U.S. board-certified Pediatric Endocrinologist. After taking his baccalaureate degree from Yale College, receiving his doctoral degree and residency training in pediatrics at University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio (UTHSCSA), he completed fellowship training in pediatric endocrinology at The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.
William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR
Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.
Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD
Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.
In this Article
- Diabetes home care management facts
- What is diabetes?
- What is the treatment for diabetes?
- Exercise therapy
- Diet therapy
- Drug therapy
- How is diabetic treatment monitored at home?
- Blood glucose reagent strips
- Blood glucose meters
- Urine glucose tests
- Tests for urinary ketones
- What additional monitoring does the doctor do?
- Blood glucose
- Continuous glucose sensors (CGMS)
- Hemoglobin A1C testing
- Find a local Endocrinologist in your town
Regular aerobic exercise improves blood circulation and lowers blood glucose levels. Exercise also strengthens the heart and helps maintain an ideal body weight. The chosen aerobic exercise should use large muscle groups. Running, walking, biking, and swimming are excellent activities for most people. The frequency, type, and duration of exercise depend on the individual's age, treatment goals, and physical ability. An exercise program should be designed with the guidance of a health care professional.
Exercise increases or decreases the blood glucose levels depending on the concentration of glucose and insulin in the blood at the time of the exercise. If blood glucose is low or normal, exercise may cause hypoglycemia (low blood glucose) due to the utilization of glucose by the active muscles. On the other hand, exercise may cause hyperglycemia (high blood glucose), if there isn't enough insulin to allow the active muscles to utilize blood glucose. As a result, the muscles signal the body to produce more glucose, and the glucose accumulates in the blood. Therefore, food intake and insulin doses should be adjusted based on the intensity and duration of the anticipated exercise.
Proper nutrition is critical to the management of all forms of diabetes. Some type 2 diabetes patients can be controlled with diet and exercise alone. The right nutrition can help control blood glucose levels, reduce blood cholesterol, maintain optimal body weight, and delay the complications of diabetes. Like exercise, diet therapy is tailored for each person. A successful diet should ideally take into consideration the person's ethnic background, financial situation, and lifestyle. It also should be simple, since it may be more difficult to follow diet plans with complex food exchanges.
People with diabetes are often advised to use alternative (artificial) sweeteners. Sweeteners are either nutritive or non–nutritive. Nutritive sweeteners, such as sorbitol and fructose, provide calories but may not raise blood glucose levels as much as regular sugar. Non-nutritive sweeteners, such as saccharin and aspartame, do not contain calories. Both types of sweeteners are acceptable, but the caloric content of the nutritive sweeteners should be considered when calculating the daily intake of calories. In addition, large quantities of sorbitol can cause diarrhea, and fructose may contribute to some of the complications of diabetes.
Next: Drug therapy
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