Let’s take a dive and understand how blood sugar affects your health, shall we?
The fasting blood sugar test is a blood test taken to estimate the blood sugar levels of a person and screen for diabetes or prediabetes. It is usually taken before a person consumes anything in the morning or at the expiry of at least eight hours from the last feed.
We are still at that time of the year again, where we promise to turn a new leaf. We pledge to turn our backs to sugar, and everything else unhealthy.
Just as we map out new goals for the year and prioritize self-care, quarterly medical check-ups which include keeping the blood sugar levels in check, are very important.
To help you make sure this year’s resolution doesn’t get carried over to next year, we are highlighting a few tips to help keep your blood sugar in check – which really is one of our most asked questions.
To begin, it is important to note that a high blood sugar level (commonly known as hyperglycemia) is caused by the presence of excess sugar in the blood. It is either as a result of poor dietary choices and physical lifestyle or as a result of the body producing insufficient amounts of insulin. It can also occur due to the inability of the body to use properly the insulin provided.
Hyperglycemia is prevalent in low and middle-income countries like Nigeria – which has about 10% of her population suffering from diabetes. It causes damages to blood vessels, slows tissues/body healing, damages the eye, increases chances of organ failure as well as the risk of a person suffering a stroke or heart attack, amongst others.
Treating hyperglycemia and reducing blood sugar levels is done with a combination of drugs (prescribed by a doctor), regular fasting blood sugar tests, and a healthy diet with exercise. We will be highlighting and discussing some of these points below to help your health journey this 2022.
Dietary and lifestyle changes that can contribute to a lower blood sugar level are:
Eating healthier foods:
This new year, take better control of your dietary choices in order to achieve better health. Fill your plates with good fruits, vegetables, quality proteins, and other whole foods, to stay healthy and disease-free. When you can, devote some time to discovering more creative ways to enjoy healthier food options on your plate!
Drink more water:
Just like healthy food, water acts as fuel in the body by helping it function. Water is beneficial in regulating the body’s temperature, keeping joints lubricated, delivering nutrients to cells, keeping organs functioning properly, and preventing infections. Note the recommended adequate daily fluid need, which is at least eight cups of water for adults.
Find exercises you enjoy:
From boosting the body’s energy levels to combating diseases, the benefits of exercises to health are hard to ignore. One way you can develop a consistent and fulfilling fitness routine is by partaking in exercises that you genuinely enjoy. There are different types of exercises, you can do lightweight or low-impact training such as walking, instead of the more strenuous activities.
Get regular medical check-ups:
Routine medical check-ups to reveal blood pressure levels, lipid profile, fasting blood sugar, kidney function, liver function, eye strength, e.t.c. are all advised to keep you informed of your health status.
Improve your sleeping:
Having adequate rest is important for better mental and physical health. It triggers improved concentration, a stronger immune system, reduced stress, and more effective body metabolism.
Finally, a reduction in blood sugar levels will only be experienced gradually. So don’t be in too much of a hurry. We advise regular fasting blood sugar tests to estimate blood sugar levels over long periods of time. Also, while waiting for an improvement, commit to consistently working towards improving your total body health.
If nothing else, this year, commit to periodic routine medical health checks with us.
Cheers to life!