Diabetes Treatment NJ

Expert Tips for Staying Healthy Into the New Year

(ARA) – While the winter months bring the joys of snowy days, holiday feasts and New Year’s resolutions, they can also be a challenging time to stay healthy – especially for people living with diabetes. Certified Diabetes Educator (CDE) Lara Hassan notes that maintaining blood sugar levels during the winter months can be done.

“Nearly 26 million Americans are living with diabetes,” says Hassan, a registered dietitian and a CDE on the Sanofi US CDE Help Team. “When setting goals and resolutions for the New Year, it is extremely important to remember that just a few simple decisions can help those living with diabetes better maintain their blood sugar levels.” Below are a few of her helpful tips:

Watch the starches

The winter months are notorious for their adverse effect on our waistline, predominately due to the abundance of holiday meals and parties. Hassan’s golden rule: Up your vegetable intake and prepare no more than two starchy dishes when preparing meals. When it comes time to hit the buffet, Hassan says to scan the selection first and then decide what you want. Though drinks like hot cocoa and eggnog may be seasonal favorites, Hassan suggests opting for lower carbohydrate beverages such as seltzer or diet cola.

Maintain physical activity

Though the tendency during the cold months may be to hunker down in front of the fireplace, it is extremely important to maintain physical activity. If you can’t make it to the gym or do not want to brave the outdoors for a walk, Hassan suggests finding alternate sources of exercise, such as walking down every aisle at the grocery store or taking an extra lap or two around the mall while shopping. Simple things like walking around the house while on the phone or stretching during TV commercials can also make a difference.

Keep on track with treatment

While the temptation to cheat on your diet or routine may be greater during the winter, Hassan reminds her patients that adherence to treatment is paramount: “Things like ski trips and long-distance vacations can interfere with your usual habits. Skipping or delaying your treatment can make your blood sugar levels harder to control.” Hassan says that a lot of her patients opt for the once a day insulin Lantus® (insulin glargine [rDNA origin] injection), which comes in the Lantus® SoloSTAR®, a disposable pre-filled pen, as part of their overall diabetes treatment plan which includes a healthy diet, exercise and oral medications. Hassan also notes it’s important to work with a healthcare professional – no matter what time of year – to determine the most appropriate treatment plan.

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