Get Real! You Don't Have to Knock Yourself Out to Prevent Diabetes
This tip sheet encourages people at risk for type 2 diabetes to move more and eat less to lower their risk for diabetes.
Last reviewed: 02/01/2013
Studies show that people at high risk for type 2 diabetes can prevent or delay the disease if they lose as little as 10 to 14 pounds (if they weigh 200 pounds) by walking 30 minutes 5 days a week and making healthy food choices. Keep in mind that small steps can lead to big rewards.
Use these tips for ideas to move more and make healthy food choices.
Take your first step today!
- Step 1: Move More.
- Step 2: Make Healthy Food Choices.
- Step 3: Start Your GAME PLAN to Prevent Diabetes.
Step 1 Move More.
Plan to get at least 30 minutes of physical activity 5 days each week to help you lose weight. You can get this amount in small ways throughout the day. If you have not been active, talk to your doctor and start slowly to build up to your goal.
Here are some ideas to fit more physical activity into your day:
- Park your car farther away from stores, movie theaters, or your office.
- Use TV breaks to stretch, take a quick walk around your home, do some sit-ups, or march in place.
- Get your friends and family involved. Set a standing walking date. Or do something that everyone enjoys—shoot hoops, take a bike ride, or line dance.
- Walk during your lunch break.
- Deliver a message to a co-worker in person instead of by email. Take the stairs to your office instead of the elevator.
Step 2 Make Healthy Food Choices.
Choose foods that are low in fat, sugar, and calories to help you lose weight. Limit portion sizes.
Start today to:
- Eat a variety of colorful vegetables and fruits.
- Choose whole grain foods—whole wheat bread and crackers, oatmeal, brown rice, and cereals.
- Lower fat intake—broil or bake poultry, meats, and fish instead of frying.
- Lighten your recipes by using nonfat or low-fat milk, yogurt, cheese, sour cream, cream cheese, or mayonnaise. Use cooking spray instead of oil.
- Avoid getting too hungry by eating a healthy snack between meals.
- Do not keep chips, cookies, or candy in your home. Instead, for snacks have raw vegetables, fruit, low-fat or nonfat yogurt, or a handful of nuts, pumpkinseeds, or sunflower seeds.
- Choose water to drink.
Use this chart as a guide for portion sizes
1/2 cup of cooked rice or pasta =
An ice cream scoop
1 1/2 ounces of cheese =
3 ounces of meat or fish =
Deck of cards
2 tablespoons peanut butter =
A ping pong ball
Step 3 Start Your GAME PLAN to Prevent Diabetes.
The key to losing weight and preventing diabetes is to make long-term changes that work for you—every day.
Taking these steps is a great way to get started.