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इंडियन आवाज़     10 Aug 2022 01:25:30      انڈین آواز

How to manage diabetes in the winter season?

HEALTH DESK

As the mercury levels drop and it is chilled outside, maintaining a healthy lifestyle becomes a challenge. Especially if you have diabetes, managing a healthy lifestyle becomes a bigger challenge for you. The Winter season will change your routine, and you will feel like staying at home. However, a better understanding of your problems and timely precautions help take care of diabetes in winter.

The diabetes management guidelines recommend keeping warm, staying inside yet physically active, taking good care of your hands, fingers, feet, and toes, and regular tracking of blood sugar levels. To avoid further complications, winter care for diabetes also includes taking your flu shots on time. Keep reading to understand the problems you may face as a diabetic patient and the precautions that you should follow to stay healthy.  

Tips to control blood sugar levels in winter

The dropping temperature hinders your daily activities and workouts. Type 2 diabetes management guidelines help you on the most frigid days and nights with the tips for winter care for diabetes:

Stay physically warm:

As diabetes affects your blood circulation, you may lose sensation. Especially in winter, managing cold hands and feet can be very challenging, but you may do so as suggested below:

  • Wear woollen clothes and thermal innerwear.
  • Protect your feet with warm woollen socks and good-fitting shoes.
  • Wear gloves to keep your fingers and hands warm.
  • Stay away from the cold.
  • Eat hot or warm food, and sip on a healthy hot soup.
  • Switch on your room’s heater.

Eat healthier winter comfort food:

Warm winter comfort food will always give you the necessary energy during the winter days. But mind well, the food has to be healthy. Generally, people eat more food in the winter season, which is a natural response by the body to the cold weather. A cup of hot chocolate and fried snacks, although comforting, cannot be a healthy choice if you have diabetes. Do not give in to the temptations; choose healthier options such as a bowl of hot vegetable soup or a cup of tea with less or no sugar. Since you are less physically active, unnecessary carbs will elevate your blood sugar levels. Choose healthy alternatives with a low glycemic index and avoid processed, quick-fix foods. Prefer micronutrient-rich foods.

Keep attention to winter diseases:

Winter is also the season of cold, cough, and flu. Diabetic people need to be more careful and avoid other winter diseases. You will feel less energetic and lethargic, which will make your blood sugar levels rise. Flu can trigger some terrible complications in diabetes patients. Diabetic winter care includes going for a flu shot, keeping track of cough and cold, and regularly monitoring blood sugar levels to stay fit and away from winter diseases.

Check your blood sugar level:

Winters are times when you are bound to miss your routine workout or crave for carbohydrates to fight the cold. Diabetes management guidelines recommend frequent blood sugar monitoring during winter. Keep your glucometer handy. Check your sugar regularly, maybe daily. Cold may affect your glucometer. Discuss with your physician if you sense that something is wrong. Have your readings ready to discuss with your physician and cooperate to make the suggested changes in lifestyle by your physician.

Keep your mood well:

Colder weather without sunshine is a gloomy time and can impact your mental health. Not being able to take a walk outside and the lack of vitamin D may further add to depression. Elevate your mood by talking to your loved ones. Discuss with a therapist or physician. Eat healthy food and stay active. Do some home workouts, and lift some weights to help you lift your mood. You can practice yoga as well. If you stay active, your body will become sensitive to insulin which will help better glucose utilisation and overall management of the diabetic condition.

Keep checking your feet’s condition:

Being a diabetic patient, your feet are the most vulnerable during the cold season. Dry and cracked feet can be an invitation to infections. Keep checking your feet for sores, dry spots, ulcers, or cuts. Keep them moisturised, and avoid sweating from working out to stay on your feet. Pat them dry and apply a cream. Protect your feet with warm socks and properly fitting shoes. If you feel pain in your foot, consult your doctor immediately because elevated blood sugar levels may cause foot pain in diabetes.

Conclusion:

Cold winters may be harsh on people with diabetes. It is common to feel hungrier and more lethargic during winter. The diabetic management guidelines help you understand how to take care of diabetes in winter. Staying active and keeping yourself warm, warmer, but healthier food alternatives may give comfort. Track your blood sugar regularly to make changes to control it.

FAQs

  • Is diabetes worse in winter?

Low temperatures, less physical activity, numb feet and toes, and carbohydrate cravings to beat the cold may make diabetes worse in winter.

  • Why does sugar increase in winter?

Lack of activity and eating more carbohydrates may add to your blood sugar, thus increasing the levels in winter.

  • Is cold water good for diabetes?

Drinking water will keep you hydrated, lower your blood pressure, and flush out toxins. However, you should avoid cold water. It may give you a cough or cold that may become a nasty infection in winter for people with diabetes. Stay hydrated and drink lukewarm water. That will also help improve your metabolism. 

  • Is diabetes affected by cold weather?

Cold weather may increase your blood sugar levels due to a lack of physical activity and carb and starch-containing food.

  • Do people with diabetes get cold easily?

Poor blood circulation can make people with diabetes feel cold easily. Diabetes also affects your nerves and causes numbness in the limbs, which will make you feel colder.

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