DIABETES PATIENT RESOURCES

If you have type 2 diabetes – whether you’ve had the condition for a long time or just recently diagnosed – it's important that you look after your physical and mental health and well-being. Staying fit and healthy and managing your blood glucose levels will make treating your diabetes easier and reduce your risk of developing future complications. This section tells you a little bit about type 2 diabetes and provides some top tips to staying fit and well.

About Type 2 Diabetes

Insulin is a hormone the body produces to help to control blood sugar (glucose) levels by instructing the cells (e.g. in the muscles and liver) to absorb glucose from the blood and use it for energy.1

In type 2 diabetes, the body produces less insulin and the body doesn’t respond properly to the insulin that is produced. This causes glucose to build up in the blood. This can lead to serious medical conditions such as heart disease, kidney disease, blindness and amputation.2

Although type 2 diabetes is a life-long condition, medicines and lifestyle changes can help to keep blood glucose under control and reduce the risk of these serious complications.

Type 1 diabetes is a different condition, where the pancreas – which usually produces insulin – doesn’t produce any insulin.3

Diabetes Top Tips

You can do some simple things that can really make a difference and reduce your risk of developing complications.

Healthy eating
Healthy eating

Eating a balanced diet can help you maintain a healthy weight and can help keep your blood glucose at the right level

Exercise
Exercise

Regular exercise is crucial as it can help to keep your blood glucose at healthy levels

Stop smoking
Stop smoking

Stop smoking to reduce the risk of developing heart disease

Limit your alcohol
Limit your alcohol

Alcohol can affect your blood glucose. Avoid drinking more than the recommended daily amount and don’t drink on an empty stomach

Keeping well
Keeping well

Ensure you attend any check up appointments with your GP or diabetes nurse; you should also ask your GP about the winter flu jab

Check your feet regularly
Check your feet regularly

Diabetes can affect the blood circulation and nerves in your feet and make it more difficult for you to notice problems. See below for more information

Have regular eye tests
Have regular eye tests

Too much glucose in the blood can cause damage to the retina at the back of the eye; regular eye tests can help spot symptoms early and monitor any damage

Looking After Your Feet

Diabetes can gradually damage the nerves and blood vessels supplying your feet, often without you noticing. This guide aims to help you look after your feet when you have diabetes.

Download the footcare leaflet

Useful Links

There are a number of established resources available for people with type 2 diabetes, which provide information on the condition and how it is treated, and advice on how to stay well.

Diabetes UK: https://www.diabetes.org.uk
NHS: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/type-2-diabetes/
Diabetes.co.uk: https://www.diabetes.co.uk
My diabetes, my way: https://www.mydiabetesmyway.scot.nhs.uk

References

  1. Diabetes.co.uk: https://www.diabetes.co.uk/body/insulin.html [Accessed August 2019]
  2. NHS UK Type 2 Diabetes: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/type-2-diabetes/ [Accessed August 2019]
  3. NHS UK Type 1 diabetes https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/type-1-diabetes/ [Accessed August 2019]