If you have diabetes, you probably know that carrying extra weight around your waist increases your risk for heart disease and makes it harder to manage diabetes. But did you also know that just a 10-pound weight loss can help lower your blood glucose and blood pressure, improve your blood fats, and make it easier for your body to use insulin?
You don't have to be model-thin or fit into skinny jeans to make big improvements in your overall health. Making small changes in the amount and types of food you eat and getting regular exercise can help you achieve a healthy weight loss of 1 to 2 pounds a week. In 7 to 10 weeks you can lose about 10 pounds, which can help you improve your health, manage your diabetes better, and maybe even allow you to cut back on your diabetes medications with approval from your doctor.
You may be thinking, "Well, I've tried this before, and never got anywhere." The key to successful weight loss is to think in terms of small steps. You're not trying to lose 50 pounds -- just 10 pounds will do for now. No matter how much you want to lose, it helps to plan ahead for weight loss before you actually start trying to lose weight. You can succeed at losing weight by taking these three steps to help you overcome your barriers:
- Ask yourself why you want to lose weight.
- Set realistic, specific goals to help you lose weight and keep it off.
- Think about the challenges you may face and plan ways to overcome them.
Here are some practical weight loss tips to help you get started:
Diabetes and Weight Loss: Why Do You Want to Lose Weight?
It's not enough to hear from your doctor that you should lose weight. It has to be something that you want for yourself. Exploring your personal reasons for taking off unwanted pounds will help you keep on track through the tough times of low motivation or high temptation. What inspires you to lose weight?
- Do you want to be able to keep up with your children as they get older and more active?
- Is there a charity walk or run you've always wanted to join?
- Are you tired of feeling tired?
- Do you want to be able to manage your diabetes more easily?
- Are you planning a big vacation and want to be fit enough to fully enjoy it?
- Do you want to lower your risk for heart disease and other health problems?
Whatever your reasons -- and there may be more than one -- write them down and post them on the refrigerator door or somewhere you can see them. Your list will serve as a daily reminder of why you're tackling the challenge of losing weight.