Best tips for good diabetes control in older people – TierraMarillano – News from Atacama and Chile

Diabetes is a long-term disease that occurs when the pancreas does not produce insulin or when it does not efficiently produce the insulin needed by the body. There are three types of diabetes: Type 1 diabetes mellitus, which is most common in children and teens, is where the pancreas stops producing insulin. Type 2 diabetes mellitus, which is most common in adults and is associated with obesity or being overweight, lack of physical activity, and poor nutrition. In this condition, the body is not able to use insulin effectively. The third type of diabetes is gestational diabetes, which is a pregnancy complication that affects about 10% of pregnancies worldwide.

The prevalence of diabetes in our country is 10% of the population, which means that currently 1 in 10 Chileans suffers from this disease. For Maria Eugenia Lobos, head nurse at Acalis, “this is associated with a higher prevalence increase

Overweight, sedentary lifestyle and poor diet of Chileans. In fact, obesity and overweight are the main risk factors associated with type 2 diabetes, affecting 90–95%. We are headed down a bad path full of bad habits, but the good news is that it is possible to reverse it. The main thing is to adopt a healthy diet and at least 30 minutes of exercise daily, which will allow good weight control and, as a result, the pancreas to function better. ” Here we are completely in line with prevention, but What measures should we take in the case of those who already have diabetes and even more so in the case of those who are in the third and fourth years?

1.-We know that the first commandment in taking care of people who have diabetes is not to consume food or drinks that contain sugar, because it produces an increase in blood sugar levels and, as a result, it affects the organs of the body. And in the long term, it gives rise to chronic complications like diabetic retinopathy (blindness), kidney failure leading to dialysis, peripheral vascular insufficiency – circulation problems that can lead to amputation of lower limbs – etc. .

2.- At any age, physical activity is always welcome, as it will make insulin work more effectively to lower blood sugar.

3.-The secret of a balanced diet. It is advisable to fill half the plate with non-starchy vegetables, a quarter with proteins and the last quarter with carbohydrate foods. All this with a glass of water.

4.- Annual control. It is advisable to make an appointment with an ophthalmologist once a year to determine if poorly controlled diabetes is causing vision complications. One of them is known as diabetic retinopathy (related to progressive vision loss), which is detected by fundus examination.

5.-Nephropathy. In our country, diabetic nephropathy is the main cause of chronic kidney disease in patients starting renal replacement therapy. It is diagnosed through urine testing, which checks for the presence of proteinuria and determination of kidney function as a marker of kidney damage.

6.- Diabetic foot care

This results in a sustained drop in blood sugar levels, which triggers:

  • Neuropathic changes (decreased sensitivity)
  • Ischemic changes (microangiopathies)
  • Neuro-ischemic changes.
  • Increased risk of infection, injuries, and amputations.

To avoid diabetic foot, it is advisable to do a daily foot self-examination. Following the foot line, a golden rule is to never walk barefoot anywhere, wash your feet daily with warm water, never overheat, do not soak them, dry them thoroughly between the toes (use paper towels), grease them with glycerin and odorless emulsified oil. The use of callus removers or metal sandpaper is strictly prohibited. Finally, check your shoes before wearing them.

7.- Nails are another care that should be taken into account. The cut should be straight, avoiding cutting them too much. In case of older people, it is advisable to consult a podiatry specialist.

8.- Wear appropriate socks. That is, they are made of thread, cotton or wool without stitching. Change these daily, ensuring they have soft elastics to maintain good blood circulation.

9.- wear and tear The right shoes recommended by experts. Shoes should be wide-fitting, with thick soles, never pointed or with toe caps, without internal seams, comfortable so that the toes and feet remain in their natural position.

Shoes should be made of soft materials that do not create pressure, avoid elastic closures.

10.- How to treat wounds. If you get a wound, it is important to wash it with plenty of water, cover it, and go to a health center for proper management.

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