Hispanic Americans: Fight Back Against Diabetes
Over their lifetime, more than 50% of Hispanic American adults are expected to develop type 2 diabetes, according to the CDC. It’s not easy managing such a serious condition. But the good news is that you can take action right away to better control diabetes with these key tips.
Check your numbers
Talk with your healthcare provider about your blood sugar, blood pressure, and cholesterol levels. Find out what they are, what they should be, and how to keep them on target. Make sure:
Your blood sugar is checked with a hemoglobin A1c test at least twice a year.
Your cholesterol is checked once a year if you start taking statin medicines to control high cholesterol. If you are younger than age 40 and not taking statins, have your cholesterol checked at least every 5 years.
Your blood pressure is taken every time you see your provider.
Adopt a healthy lifestyle
Limit your intake of salt, fat, and added sugar. Focus on eating fruits, veggies, whole grains, and lean protein. Also, engage in physical activity for at least 150 minutes per week. If you smoke, try to quit.
Smokers with diabetes have more trouble managing their insulin and blood sugar. They are also more likely to have serious diabetes-related health problems like heart, kidney, and eye disease. Work with your healthcare team or ask family and friends to help you stop smoking.
Find support in the community
Chat with your provider about programs in your community that help people manage diabetes. Worried about language or cultural barriers? Ask friends or family members to attend appointments and meetings with you.