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Manage Diabetes from a Nurse’s Point of View

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When I first qualified as a nurse I worked in coronary care and saw a lot of acute heart problems. Most patients had type 2 diabetes, which encouraged their cardiac problems.

I wanted to move more into prevention and health promotion so I did a degree in practice nursing, with a course in Diabetes.

I started seeing diabetic patients in 2011 and I cover most things in my clinics – diagnosing and educating, mainly for people with type 2, so I explain what diabetes is and how to manage it with diet and exercise, weight loss and medication if required.

General advice for diet is cutting out sugary (often fizzy) drinks, which can add lots of hidden sugar and watching your intake of carbohydrates. They’re important to your diet but too much converts to a lot of sugar.

Exercise is essential, it helps your body break down glucose. Ideally your body needs 30 minutes of cardio five times a week to help balance sugars and maintain weight.

Governments worldwide are introducing the sugar tax, which is a great step towards helping the world’s obesity problem. Lots of companies will be reducing the amount of sugar in their products, which is great, but diabetics need to be aware of this.

Diabetics can rely on sugary drinks to manage hypos (when blood sugar goes dangerously low and needs to be elevated swiftly), so they need to know that what they once used may contain half the sugar and they’ll need double the amount for the same result, which, of course, brings forth its own issues.

Something like Gluco Tabs can be useful. They’re available from pharmacies and have a measured amount of fast acting glucose, perfect for managing a hypo and can be carried in your pocket.

As a nurse, my job has made me very conscious of my own diet and lifestyle. I’m always banging on about it to family and friends – l drive my husband mad!

News Flash
Going to the theatre is as good for your cardiovascular system as half an hour of exercise, according to new research. The study found that watching live theatre raised the heart rates of the audience by up to 70% of their maximum rate. Experimental psychologists say, by the end of the first act, heart rates nearly doubled from their resting state at the beginning, while in the second act, it tripled.

You see comparable changes in heart rate in professional tennis players during burst of highly intense exertion.

E263 – Manage Diabetes from a Nurse’s Point of View –

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