How Diabetes is Managed / Controlled
How Diabetes is Managed / Controlled

Managing Diabetes

  • Most diabetes can be managed if you can to keep your daily blood sugar levels within the following ranges:
  • Fasting blood sugar at 80-120 mg/dl
  • After meals at 180 mg/dl or less
  • Bedtime at 100-140 mg/dl
  • Different activities will affect your blood sugar:
    • Physical activity
    • Diet
    • Stress
    • Illness

Physical Activity: Why is exercise important?

  • Helps lower blood sugar (glucose)
  • Reduces blood pressure
  • Lowers cholesterol and triglycerides
  • Assists in weight loss
  • Reduces stress
  • Strengthens bones
  • Helps body use insulin more efficiently
  • Helps prevent or delay diabetes complications

Traditional Native Foods and Healthy Diets

  • The traditional diets used by our tribal ancestors have been found to be healthy and do not contribute to high blood sugar.
  • Returning to a native diet would be ideal but many of the foods or food sources are not available and/or are too expensive,

«(insert a slide showing examples of some traditional food)»

Why was the Traditional Diet Healthy?

  • Game meat eaten by the ancestors was low in fat
  • Food preparation did not include frying or adding sugar
  • Foods gathered like roots or berries were high in fiber and low in sugar
  • There was no refined sugar or white flour
  • Even cooking or gathering berries or nuts required physical exercise.

Why is Diet Important?

  • Low fat, healthy meals are recommended for persons with diabetes, cancer, or heart disease
  • Based on the needs of an individual
    • Some may be encouraged to eat certain types of food
    • Some are given helpful information on how to prepare food so its more healthy
    • There are also recommendations on serving or portion sizes
    • Healthy diets discourage certain unhealthy foods and beverages, such as sugared drinks or alcohol

The Food Exchange

  • Because persons with diabetes often are taught how to exchange certain foods for another, this has become known as a special diabetes diet.
    • But there is no special diabetes diet. The diet recommended is one that is healthy.
  • Food exchanges help you juggle healthy combinations of carbohydrates (simple and complex), protein, and fats

Diabetes and Alcohol

  • If your blood sugar is well-controlled and if you take proper precaution, it is possible to have alcohol once in a while.
  • One drink per day for women
  • One drink is:
    • 12 ounces of regular beer (150 calories)
    • 5 ounces of wine (100 calories)
    • 1.5 ounces of 80-proof distilled spirits (100 calories)

Precautions When Drinking Alcohol

  • Always eat something when you drink
  • Check the alcohol level of your drink
    • Account for any extra sugars added to the drink like fruit juices, soda, or mixes
  • Watch out for signs of hypoglycemia
    • confusion, rapid heart beat, cold sweats
    • to confirm this, check your blood sugar
    • to treat it, take glucose tablets or a snack high in sugar
  • Before you go to bed after having a drink, eat a snack.
  • Your blood sugar level can crash in the middle of the night
    • To prevent this, you may want to set your alarm clock to wake you up so you can test your blood glucose and eat a snack if necessary

Why Does This Happen?

  • When you drink alcohol, your liver stops making glucose while it removes the alcohol from your blood
  • And it takes the body about 2 hours to remove one ounce of alcohol from your body
  • This is enough time to cause insulin shock.


top of page