Best Practical Advice for Diabetes

Best Practical Advice for Diabetes

Diabetes is a chronic disease which must be followed in order to know its evolution and better be able to react to it. Diabetes is progressive and the treatment must be reassessed regularly in all its components: hygieno-dietetic measures, sporting activity, diet …

Follow your diabetes


Follow your diabetesMaintaining glycemic control is the main objective in the management of diabetes. This glycemic balance requires regular self-monitoring to avoid variations in blood sugar, too high blood sugar (hyperglycemia) or too low (hypoglycemia).

The glycemic balance is monitored in 2 ways:

In the analysis laboratory: every 3 months, fasting blood sugar or glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c) is measured
By a blood glucose meter : the patient can check his capillary blood sugar several times a day (on a drop of blood) at specific times. This is called glycemic self-monitoring (ASG)
Self-monitoring of blood sugar involves measuring your blood sugar at a particular time of the day. It is made from a drop of blood taken from the end of a finger. It can be performed in any place: at home, at work, while traveling, in a sports establishment. The patient can thus monitor his own blood sugar and take the necessary measures to control it as well as possible.

Self-monitoring of blood sugar must be part of a therapeutic education process for the patient. When prescribing an ASG device, it is essential to explain to the patient and organize with him this self-monitoring, to define the times, the frequency, the objectives and the decisions to be taken according to the results. .

Medical visits

A medical follow-up is set up to verify the effectiveness of the treatment. The fixed exams make sure that diabetes is well controlled. Follow-up must be provided at least four times a year by the attending physician, who can also refer you to specialists. Once a year:

  • A visit to an ophthalmologist;
  • A dental check-up;
  • A lipid balance (cholesterol);
  • A renal biological assessment;
  • An electrocardiogram to monitor diabetes;
  • A foot exam.

Diabetes in everyday life


Diabetes in everyday lifeGiven its effects on blood sugar , diet plays a key role in the treatment of diabetes. It is therefore important to eat a balanced diet without excess. It is necessary to know how to assess the amounts of carbohydrates and kilocalories contained in a dish.

You have to understand to what extent different foods influence blood sugar . Carbohydrates are the foods that have the greatest effect on blood sugar, so they require special attention. Therefore, counting grams of carbohydrates for each meal and snack is a simple way to plan your meals and regulate your blood sugar.

It is important to adopt a varied diet and make balanced meals at regular times without skipping meals. It is possible to consult your doctor or a dietitian to set up a food program, specific to each.

The sport

In diabetic patients , physical activity can help improve blood sugar balance.
It must be regular and adapted to the profile of the person. Like diet, physical activity is part of the treatment.

Physical activity and blood sugar

Physical exercise leads to a decrease in blood sugar . Regular physical activity improves insulin activity and reduces weight, which helps reduce vascular complications.
It is equally important to adopt new reflexes to move as much as possible during the day. For example: take the stairs instead of waiting for the elevator, do not take the escalators, do not try to park as close as possible to the shops entrance but walk a few more meters, walk faster …


It is recommended to be accompanied during a sporting activity and to warn participants of their diabetes . Therefore, sports such as hang gliding, paragliding, parachuting, mountain mountaineering, solo sailing, motor sports, etc. should be avoided.
It is important to drink during exercise and to control blood sugar more frequently to prevent hypoglycemia. So, remember to always carry sugar with you in case of hypoglycemia. Do not hesitate to provide cereal bars, compote, bread (…) in the event of prolonged effort. Obviously, always consult your doctor before starting a sports activity!

The diabetic foot

Some simple rules, to be carried out on a daily basis:

Inspect your feet (do not hesitate to use a mirror): color, heat, friction area, spaces between your toes, nails …
Wash your feet and dry them thoroughly
Treat any injuries immediately and, if necessary, consult a doctor
Choosing the right shoes
Avoid walking barefoot (even at the beach …)
These are good reflexes to adopt in order to avoid pain and possible complications. Doctors, podiatrists, educational or medical structures are there to give appropriate advice.

The diabetic traveler
The diabetic travelerAs a diabetic and before going on a trip, there are a number of parameters to take into account to avoid the unexpected. That is why, it is recommended to prepare your trips in advance so that they take place in good conditions.

Prepare the trip well
Whatever the length of stay, it is recommended to bring a valid prescription, the amount of medication required for the duration of the trip and the stay, the equipment you will need (pens, needles, blood glucose meter, etc.). ). As a precaution, it is preferable to bring more medicines and equipment to deal with any unforeseen events (extension of the trip for whatever reason).
If it is a trip abroad, it is important to find out the type of insulin used in the country visited.
Depending on the displacement it may be necessary to adapt his treatment, in particular if changes occur in:

The rhythm of meals and food: for example dishes, vegetables or fruits may be new and less is known about their effect on blood sugar
Physical activity: we often do more physical activity when we are on vacation (swimming, cycling, hiking…)
Jet lag: one of the tips is to not change the time until the first meal in the country of arrival, which allows you to follow the action of insulin and adjust food intake. get in touch with your doctor before departure to best adapt the treatment.
Storage of insulin
To transport insulin correctly, it is necessary to use isothermal kits (see the store, contact the pharmacist or contact the pharmaceutical laboratory which markets the insulin used …). Be careful not to put your insulin in contact with frozen blocks: insulin should never be stored below 0 ° C.
As soon as you arrive at your place of travel, put the insulin in the refrigerator because the unopened insulins must be stored between 2 and 8 ° C.
Likewise, remember not to leave your blood glucose meter warm, cold or in the sun in the car or train.

Go by car or train
It is best to plan your route and / or find out about the duration of the trip. As a precaution, it is advisable to bring a snack and something to drink, in order to be able to anticipate any lengthening of the route (breakdown, traffic jam, etc.).
By car, it is advisable to take a break every two hours to rest. It may be advisable to carry out a self-monitoring of blood sugar before leaving or during breaks. By train or by car, you must remember to have all your equipment (sugar, drink, blood glucose meter, etc.) close at hand, throughout the trip.

Leave by plane
Medicines are, according to the regulations, “essential liquids for the person”: one cannot prohibit a diabetic person from carrying in hand luggage, the insulin necessary for his treatment and the material useful for the monitoring of the glycemia. Not being protected from theft, forgetting or loss, it is preferable to separate the treatment, a part in hand luggage and a part in the hold.

As in a car, you have to remember to have all your equipment at hand: insulin , blood glucose meter , sugar …
It is possible to contact the borrowed airline directly, to find out if there are any specific modes of transport.

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