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  Life   Health  07 Aug 2018  Here’s how you can effectively juggle between diabetes and work

Here’s how you can effectively juggle between diabetes and work

Published : Aug 7, 2018, 1:28 pm IST
Updated : Aug 7, 2018, 1:28 pm IST

Diabetes and work don’t always mix because it involves managing food, medicines, rest, monitoring, and exercise.

Diabetes doesn’t have to interfere with an individual’s job, and one should manage to balance diabetes and a hectic work schedule.
 Diabetes doesn’t have to interfere with an individual’s job, and one should manage to balance diabetes and a hectic work schedule.

An inseparable part of our lives is work, and it can get tough when faced with a hectic schedule. However, this can be a bigger concern for people with diabeties. Diabetes and work don’t always mix because it involves managing food, medicines, rest, monitoring, and exercise. This coupled with deadlines, long hours and travel can be incredibly overwhelming and cause high-stress levels which could lead to further complications.

However, diabetes management is a part of our lives, and this also includes life at work. Diabetes doesn’t have to interfere with an individual’s job, and one should manage to balance diabetes and a hectic work schedule. The better one understands his or her condition, the better they can work with and around it to successfully manage diabetes and career.

Dr Varsha Khatry, Head- Medical and Scientific Affair, Roche Diabetes Care India provides few tips on how to balance good diabetes management and a hectic work schedule:

Opt for nutritious & healthy breakfast options: Skipping breakfast is the most common and easiest way to save time if one is dealing with a hectic work schedule. But if you’re managing diabetes, there are many reasons why eating breakfast is a priority.

The main reason is that eating a healthy and nutritious breakfast can help regulate blood sugar levels for the rest of the day and is extremely essential for diabetes and weight management. Begin your day with healthy breakfast options like whole grain cereal or oatmeal with skimmed milk, topped with fresh fruits instead of sugar to sweeten your meal.

They're packed with fibre, vitamins, and minerals and make a great base for a healthy and diabetes-friendly breakfast.

Healthy snacks should receive preference: Snacking between meals is important if you’re taking medication for diabetes to keep your blood sugar levels under control. Eating regular meals and snacks through the day in controlled portions, helps you maintain good blood sugar control and in turn will help you manage your work as well.

However, it is also important to choose your snacks well by making smart food choices. Choose healthy snacking options like raw vegetables such as celery, asparagus or carrot with low-fat yoghurt dip or a handful of nuts to avoid overeating during meals and to manage blood sugar levels. You can also consider having whole grain crackers with natural peanut butter and peanuts, they are low glycemic index (GI) foods.

This means that they have a lower effect on blood sugar levels. They are easy to carry and snack on mid work as well.

Walk around in the workplace: If you are living with diabetes, exercising is extremely significant. However, with a hectic work schedule which demands late hours or travelling all the time, it can get challenging to keep up with your exercise routine. A sedentary lifestyle is not advisable for those living with diabetes.

Hence, if you are stuck at your desk, you will need to find ways and means to move around from time to time for proper diabetes management. If you have a hectic work life, this will be a bit of a struggle for you.

Fortunately, there are many ways to squeeze in some time for fitness. Simple things like walking around while you talk on a call, fit in a few minutes to go out for a walk during your lunch break or taking the stairs instead of the elevator can help you have some form of exercise amidst your hectic work schedule.   

Remain ready to treat low blood glucose: It is important to keep something to handle your lows wherever you go. Carry glucose tablets or chocolate in your work bag every time. Keep some tablets or chocolate in your drawer at work as well just in case.

If you are stuck in a meeting due to which you haven’t eaten on time, chances of your feeling low are high and hence to avoid any complications, always have something on you to treat your lows.

Monitor blood glucose levels and plan for sugar checks: If you have to travel for work or you have a series of long meetings, the worst thing is having a severe glucose level drop when you’re alone. Get yourself a glucose monitor and regularly check your blood glucose levels.

This allows proactive behaviour instead of reacting later to problems that may arise due to high or low blood glucose levels. It is also essential to plan your monitoring schedule for ideal diabetes management. This way, your glucose levels can be checked regularly and subtly at your desk or in the bathroom if you have a plan in advance. Keep reminder for regular monitoring and stick to your schedule.

Always control stress: Stress is an essential factor to take into consideration while managing your diabetes. Stress hormones in your body can directly affect your blood sugar levels. Hence, your blood sugar can increase when you are highly stressed.

If your job is stressful, managing stress should also be a priority by including stress relieving activities in your daily schedule. Try deep breathing or meditation to regulate stress levels. Physical activity like a brisk walk away from your desk for a couple of minutes will keep your stress levels under control at the same increases your physical activity.

Regular monitoring of Diabetes is critical for a healthy life: Blood glucose monitoring on a regular basis will help you keep a check on your glucose levels. Additionally, being aware of your glucose level will help you to commit and to maintain a healthy lifestyle, thus reducing your chances of diabetes. A range of testing and monitoring instruments are available to help people manage their diabetes. You could connect with your doctors to take advice on the most appropriate equipment for you and your family.

That centuries-old phrase still rings true today: The little things you do for your mind and body go a long way toward your total well-being. Simple actions in the middle of your workday can make a lasting difference in your health.

The opinions expressed in this article are the author's own and do not reflect the view of the Roche Diabetes Care India.

Tags: diabetes, professional life, healthy breakfast, low blood glucose, health and well being, tips to maintain glucose level, tips for working diabetics