Infographic showing blood sugar level on glucometer and insulin - World Diabetes Day 2021

World Diabetes Day 2021: Resources for people living with diabetes

Author: Francesca - Mr Lee's Team

Diabetes is a widespread illness which can have a huge impact on people’s lives. According to Diabete UK, around 4.9 million people suffer from it in the UK and if things don’t change, it is estimated that 5.5 million people will be affected by 2030.

This chronic condition, which affects the way the body turns food into energy, can develop slowly and can go unnoticed for quite some time. Although there are several types of diabetes and symptoms may be different for each individual, it’s important to know how to control and manage them.

This World Diabetes Day 2021 (14th November 2021) we wanted to play a part in raising awareness about this chronic condition. Having diabetes is not easy and might be very daunting at the beginning but there are loads of resources out there which can help you better manage this illness. Check them out!

Apps

Apps can prove very useful and assist you in monitoring your health conditions. Mysugr allows you to log and track your blood sugar levels and with Fooducate, a nutrition focused app, you can scan and search for foods and see their nutritional quality. Glucose Buddy has features that help you track your steps, exercise and meals and Diabetes:M gives you the option of setting reminders and inputting what you eat into a diary. It also offers an insulin bolus calculator and it is able to integrate with your fitness apps.

Books

A great way of learning more about your illness is by reading. Diabetes for dummies is the perfect book for the newly diagnosed as it provides a guide to help you take control of your condition including treatment options, how to spot early signs and prevent the progression of your diabetes. Bright spots and landmines - The Diabetes Guide I Wish Someone Had Handed Me written by Adam Brown, who suffers from diabetes, covers a range of topics from diet and exercise to sleep strategies and mindset.

Think Like a Pancreas, by award-winning Certified Diabetes Educator Gary Scheiner, is aimed mostly at those with type 1 diabetes and provides tips and tools for controlling glucose and administering insulin.

Cookbooks

Having diabetes doesn’t mean you have to stop eating your favourite meals. Cookbooks are a great source of cooking inspiration. The Hairy Bikers Eat to Beat Type 2 Diabetes includes a range of healthy and delicious low-cal versions of traditional dishes and family favourites and The 30Minute Diabetes Cookbook offers 100 diabetes-friendly recipes that are ready in 30 minutes or less.

Blogs and websites

There are also a range of blogs and websites that provide very interesting and useful information. On Diabetes UK you will find everything you need to know about the different types of diabetes, the research that is being carried out and how to get involved in raising awareness. Diabetic Foodie is the perfect blog for those in need of original recipes. On the website you will find a variety of meals and snacks that are suitable for diabetics, from bacon and egg muffins and low-carb lasagna to diabetes-friendly salad dressings and smoothie recipes.

You can also find tips on healthy living and the latest news, research and recipes on Diabetes Self-Management and you can read about Renza Scibilia’s experience with type 1 diabetes on her personal blog Diabetogenic.

Communities

Communities are a safe space for those affected by the disease. They are a fantastic way of receiving support, chatting, learning from others and discussing issues with those who are in the same situation as you. Diabetes UK has several online communities as well as a support forum and on Facebook you can find a variety of groups focused on parents of children with diabetes, women with type 1 diabetes and many others.  

Influencers

Influencers are also a very good resource. Not only can you learn from them but they can also provide support and a sense of community for those who need it.

You can read about Jessyka’s diagnosis and her day-to-day life on her account diabetic_jess. Diabeteswithmilly is good for those who suffer from Type 1 Diabetes as she shares her story and provides tips on what works best for her and Jessica Meau uses her platform to help others by sharing ideas for meals and recipes.

You can also find a range of health and wellness professionals who provide tips on diet, exercise and lifestyle. Diana (dietitian and CDE) and Jose (exercise physiologist) use their account reversingt2d to provide guidance and recommendations for type 2 diabetes.

Foods

When it comes to diabetes, following a healthy and balanced diet focused on the main food groups is essential. The NHS Eat Well Guide will help you learn what foods you should be eating more of, ultimately, helping you make healthier choices for your body.

However, having time to prepare and cook meals every day is a luxury not everybody has and when we have no time, we tend to lean on ready-made meals or instant foods and snacks. When you are in a rush and need to pick something up quickly, it may be difficult to figure out which options are the best. Here are some ideas: 

Eat Real’s Sea Salt Lentil Chips may be a good option as they are vegan, gluten-free and low in fats and Sunbites’ wholegrain crisps and popcorn could also be a great choice. When it comes to sweet treats, Boka Food have a pack of mixed flavour cereal bars which are low in sugar, salt and fats as well as high in fibre and Adonis offer a range of keto bars which are vegan, gluten-free and low in carbs and sugars.

Mr Lee’s has a range of instant foods which may be a good alternative if you are watching your sugar intake, as they are all certified low in sugar by Sugar Wise. Our gluten-free porridges are made with no artificial ingredients and are available in three flavours. They are great to start off your mornings! Our congees and noodles are also gluten-free and low in both sugar and saturated fats and are perfect for a quick midday snack.

 

Whilst we hope this list of resources proves useful, please bear in mind that diabetes is different for everyone. We suggest you ask your doctor about how best to manage your symptoms and always read the label when looking for suitable products.

 

*Disclaimer: This article in no way provides medical information or advice. Please always check with your doctor. 

Resources 
https://www.diabetes.org.uk/professionals/position-statements-reports/statistics
https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/eat-well/the-eatwell-guide/
https://www.diabetes.org.uk/how_we_help/community 
https://www.diabetes.org.uk/how_we_help/community/diabetes-support-forum

 

Mr Lees Team