Eating the wrong food is not the only way to increase the likelihood of diabetes. Here are six other ways that you could be endangering your health without even knowing it.
1. Do you drink too many soft drinks?
You may think that the high level of sugar in soft drinks is a major cause of diabetes, but it’s the weight you gain from excess sugar consumption – not the sugar itself – that increases your risk. When you’re overweight, your body has to work harder to produce insulin in order to control your glucose levels. When it can’t keep up, your risk of diabetes skyrockets.
2. Do you skip breakfast?
Missing breakfast even one day per week increases your risk of diabetes by 20 per cent. It’s not called the most important meal of the day for nothing. Eating breakfast helps you maintain healthy insulin levels. When you skip breakfast, those levels dip, and when you do finally eat, they spike. These extreme changes to your insulin levels can give you diabetes.
3. Do you sleep enough?
When you don’t sleep enough, you feel sluggish and your energy levels drop. But that could also actually be a sign of diabetes, not just tiredness. Sleep is as important for maintaining healthy insulin levels as the food you eat.
4. Are you depressed?
Depression is not only a side effect of diabetes. People who suffer from depression also have a 63 per cent higher risk of developing diabetes. Symptoms of depression and diabetes are very similar, so if you’re feeling blue, it may be time to see your GP.
5. Do you sit around too much?
Sitting around all day increases your risk of developing diabetes by 3.4 per cent. Getting out and about is crucial for your health – even if it’s just to walk around for a couple of minutes every half hour or so. Exercise can also stave off the blues and keep your mind and body active.
6. Do you sweat enough?
If you don’t sweat enough, you’re more likely to get diabetes. So spend 20 minutes a day, at least three to four days per week, doing something that makes you sweat. Once your body gets used to short stints of exercise, you’ll sweat less, so you’ll have to ramp it up in increments for maximum effect.
Changing a few bad habits and incorporating new healthier ones into your daily routine can be the difference between developing diabetes and staying on track for a healthy life. At the very least, you’ll feel better.
Disclaimer: If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, have a history of diabetes in your family or feel you may be doing a few too many of the aforementioned diabetes ‘no-nos’, then it may be wise to have a check-up.