News & Insights 16 June 2021

World Diabetes Week: help keep your blood sugar levels under control

Diabetes is a long-term condition that causes an individual’s blood sugar levels to reach dangerously high levels. Your blood sugar levels are regulated by a hormone called insulin; in those with type 1 diabetes, the body’s immune system attacks and destroys the cells that produce insulin, whereas those with type 2 diabetes either do not produce enough insulin or the cells within their body don’t react effectively to it. Type 2 is far more common, comprising over 90% of all UK adult cases , but is also the only type that can be both prevented and managed with some simple lifestyle changes!

If you are unfamiliar with diabetes, you may be wondering why having high blood sugar levels is such a big deal. The answer lies in the vast array of complications that can occur as a result of diabetes, and ultimately lead to some serious damage. With chronic complications ranging from eye and foot problems, to nerve damage, kidney problems, and even heart attacks and strokes, diabetes is not something to take lightly.

Several early symptoms of type 2 diabetes tend to be quite general, such as fatigue, weight or muscle loss, feeling thirsty or needing to go to the toilet more so than usual, and, as such, many people can go years without being appropriately diagnosed. The danger here is that, if left untreated, diabetes becomes progressively worse over time and causes the aforementioned complications. That’s why, this Diabetes Week, Diabetes UK are encouraging people to share their stories to help raise awareness of the signs, symptoms and complications of diabetes, alongside various prevention, management and remission strategies.

Many people living with type 2 diabetes are able to put their diabetes into remission through modest changes to their daily routine and general lifestyle, this essentially means returning to healthy blood sugar levels, usually without the need for medication. One of the best ways to do this is to increase your physical activity, as moving more can help to increase insulin sensitivity, assist in weight loss, improve cholesterol to protect against heart disease alongside a plethora of other benefits.

Whilst the wide range of benefits to getting more movement into your everyday routine are evident, you may still be anxious about how you might cope with increasing your activity, the impact on your fatigue levels and blood sugar levels, or even just feeling as though you lack confidence and don’t know where to start. Thankfully, physical activity doesn’t have to be overwhelming, intense or stressful and can be undertaken within the confines of your own home – whatever you are comfortable with!

Finding the value in your everyday activity is easy when you begin to appreciate that impact of each and every movement you make throughout the day; from doing some gardening, housework or cooking, to parking further away at the supermarket or pottering around during TV ad breaks – it all adds up!

Here at KiActiv®, we help to empower you to find the activity that works for you, enabling you to take control over your own diabetes prevention and management, whilst also benefitting your mind and wellbeing too. It’s never too late to make a positive change to your lifestyle and start living a healthier, happier life.

The KiActiv® Team