Tips for Diabetic Patients to Navigate the Fall Season for Better Blood Sugar Control

Diabetics face challenges in controlling their blood sugar levels, particularly during seasonal transitions. It is crucial for individuals with diabetes to familiarize themselves with the guidelines for managing their health during the autumn season. As we bid farewell to oppressive summer heat and welcome the arrival of cool morning and evening breezes, those with diabetes don’t always share in the excitement of the weather change. Dry and unpredictable autumn weather can pose obstacles to effectively managing blood sugar levels. To ensure a healthy autumn season, here are six essential tips for individuals with diabetes.

Be mindful of portion sizes and avoid overeating and excessive drinking. Despite the temptation of seasonal delights, it is critical for diabetics to exercise control over their food consumption. Overeating, even in small quantities, can hinder blood sugar control and weight management. It is particularly important to exercise caution when consuming fruits with high sugar content, high-calorie foods, and excessive alcohol.

The Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency recommends a balanced intake of the three main nutrients: carbohydrates, fats, and proteins. Diabetic patients should opt for foods rich in monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids while reducing the consumption of saturated and trans fatty acids. Additionally, it is advisable to choose high-quality protein sources such as fish, beans, nuts, chicken, and duck over fatty meats. Individuals with diabetes who have liver disease, dyslipidemia, or obesity should refrain from consuming alcohol. However, those with well-controlled blood sugar are allowed to drink within the range of 1 to 2 drinks per day.

Adequate hydration is essential for diabetics, especially during dry weather. The recommended daily water intake for diabetic patients is calculated by multiplying their body weight in kilograms by 30. For instance, an individual weighing 60kg should consume about 1800ml (60×30) of water. Drinking plenty of water does not impact blood sugar control negatively. In fact, in cases of severe hyperglycemia, increased urine output can lead to dehydration and exacerbate thirst. Thus, it is crucial to prevent hyperglycemia from worsening by hydrating adequately. However, diabetics should exercise caution when consuming sugary drinks as they can spike blood sugar levels, increase urine output, and contribute to dehydration.

Dryness and itching can be exacerbated by high blood sugar levels, making regular use of moisturizers essential during the fall season. Dry autumn weather can dehydrate the skin, causing itching. Itching can also be an early symptom of diabetic neurocomplications, indicating the need for regular blood sugar level monitoring and complication checks. Women with diabetes may experience itching in the genital area due to fungal vaginitis. In such cases, combining infection treatment with blood sugar control is crucial.

Diabetics are more susceptible to infections and, therefore, should prioritize vaccination. The recommended fall vaccines for diabetic patients include the influenza vaccine and pneumococcal vaccine, which should be administered annually from October to December. While the pneumococcal vaccine was previously recommended every five years, newer vaccines are now available that provide lifelong effectiveness after a single administration.

It is crucial for individuals with diabetes to closely monitor their blood sugar levels when ill. Illnesses such as the common cold, infections, vomiting, and diarrhea can increase the body’s insulin requirements, leading to elevated blood sugar levels. In severe cases, dehydration and ketoacidosis may occur. When experiencing illness, regular self-monitoring of blood sugar every four hours is recommended. Additionally, individuals with diarrhea or vomiting should monitor their blood sugar levels more frequently. Insulin injections or oral hypoglycemic agents should be taken as usual. If symptoms worsen, such as high fever, nausea, or vomiting, prompt medical attention is necessary.

Proper blood sugar monitoring before and after exercise is critical. Fall’s cool breeze offers an ideal climate for physical activity. Before engaging in exercise, individuals should check their blood sugar levels. If the pre-exercise blood sugar level exceeds 300 mg/dL, it is advisable to delay exercise. Alternatively, if the blood sugar level falls below 100 mg/dL, consuming a snack before exercising is recommended to prevent hypoglycemia. It is best to exercise 1 to 2 hours after a meal. If blood sugar levels remain high, it is advisable to avoid exercise and rest. To prevent dehydration and episodes of low blood sugar, staying hydrated and carrying snacks during exercise is also vital. Diabetic retinopathy is a potential complication of diabetes. Therefore, individuals with this condition should be cautious and avoid exceeding a systolic blood pressure of 170 mmHg during exercise, which can lead to retinal hemorrhage.

By following these guidelines, individuals with diabetes can have a healthy and enjoyable autumn season. Prioritizing proper nutrition, hydration, skincare, vaccinations, regular blood sugar monitoring, and safe exercise will contribute to overall well-being and blood sugar control. Remember to consult healthcare professionals for personalized advice and adjustments to diabetes management strategies.

Diabetics have difficulty controlling their blood sugar levels especially during seasonal changes, so it’s a good idea to know the rules of the fall season (Photo = Clip Art Korea).

The heat that had been bothering us all season is gone, and fall has arrived with cold winds blowing in the mornings and evenings. However, diabetic patients are not always happy about sudden changes in the weather. This is because during dry and unpredictable seasons, you may have difficulty controlling your blood sugar levels. We looked at 6 tips for diabetic patients to enjoy a healthy fall season.

■Be careful not to overeat and drink… You should eat just enough to feel full

It’s hard to resist eating in the fall, when the appetite increases with the variety of seasonal foods. However, diabetic patients tend to overeat even if they only eat small amounts of different types of food, so control is more important than anything else. In particular, seasonal fruits with high sugar content, high calorie foods, and excessive drinking make it difficult to control blood sugar and weight, so special care must be taken.

The Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency recommends a balanced intake of the three main nutrients (carbohydrates, fat and protein) at a certain time each day. Eat foods rich in monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acidsReduce your intake of saturated fatty acids and trans fatty acids. Eat high quality protein (fish, beans, nuts, chicken, duck, etc.) rather than fatty meat.I recommend doing this. also Diabetes patients with liver disease, dyslipidemia, or obesity should refrain from drinking alcohol, but only if their blood sugar is well controlled Drinking is allowed within the range of 1 to 2 drinks a day.I do it.

■It is important to drink enough water… Be careful with drinks that contain sugar

In the dry weather these days, it is necessary to drink plenty of water. The recommended daily water intake (㎖) for diabetic patients is body weight (kg) multiplied by For example, if your weight is 60kg, about 1800ml (60×30) is appropriate. Drinking lots of water does not affect blood sugar control.

Professor Ko Gyeong-soo of the Diabetes Center at Inje University Sanggye Paik Hospital said, “However, In severe hyperglycemia, the amount of urine increases and secondary dehydration occurs, causing thirst, so drinking water is essential to prevent hyperglycemia from worsening.“You can do it,” he said.Be especially careful when drinking drinks that contain a lot of sugar, as this can lead to higher blood sugar levels and urine output, leading to dehydration and repeating the vicious cycle of thirst again.“It has to be done,” he said.

■Skin dryness and itching in case of high blood sugar… Moisturizer should be used often

The dryness of the fall can make the skin itchy worse, so moisturizer must be used often. do. If high blood sugar gets worse, dehydration can cause the skin to dry out and cause itching. In addition, general itching can appear as an early symptom of diabetic neurocomplications, so it is necessary to control blood sugar levels and check regularly for complications. Women may experience symptoms of itching around the genital area due to fungal vaginitis, in which case infection treatment should be combined with blood sugar control. do.

■ Vulnerable to infection… You should get the flu and pneumococcal vaccine

Diabetics are susceptible to infections and should be vaccinated. The recommended fall vaccines for diabetic patients are influenza vaccine and pneumococcal (pneumococcal) vaccine administered annually from October to The pneumococcal vaccine is recommended to be given every five years, but recently, vaccines are being used which are effective after being given once in a lifetime.

■If you are unwell, make sure you test your blood sugar… In case of worsening, visit the hospital immediately

On days when the body is sick due to cold, infection, vomiting, diarrhoea, etc., the need for insulin increases relatively, causing blood sugar levels to rise, and in severe cases, it can dehydration and ketoacidosis occur. When you are sick with a cold, etc., do a self-blood sugar test every 4 If you have diarrhea or vomiting, you should test your blood sugar more often. do. Take insulin injections or oral hypoglycemic agents as usual. If symptoms such as high fever, nausea, and vomiting become severe, you should visit the hospital. do.

Checking blood sugar levels before and after exercise is essential… Be sure to bring snacks

Fall, with its refreshing breeze, is a good season for exercise. But for safe exercise It is essential to check the blood sugar level before exercise.. If your pre-exercise blood sugar level is above 300 mg/dL, delay exercise If it is below 100 mg/dL, exercise after eating a snack because of the risk of hypoglycemia during It is appropriate to exercise 1 to 2 hours after a meal. If high blood sugar persists, it is best to avoid exercise and rest.

It is also a good idea to drink plenty of water to prevent dehydration and bring snacks to prevent low blood sugar. Professor Kyung-soo Ko said, “Especially before and after exercise, you should check your feet for any wounds such as ulcers.” If you have diabetic retinopathy as a complication of diabetes, retinal hemorrhage can occur due to a rapid increase in blood pressure, so be careful not to exceed 170 mmHg in systolic blood pressure when exercising. “Do it,” he advised.

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