The temperature is plummeting, are you ready for winter? For diabetic patients, winter is the season when the condition is likely to worsen and they are more likely to suffer from various complications. Zhang Ying, chief physician of the Department of Endocrinology and Metabolism of the Third Affiliated Hospital of Guangzhou Medical University, suggested that on days when the temperature drops sharply, people with diabetes can do a few things to help them survive the winter safely.
Monitor blood sugar closely
In winter, many people with diabetes reduce their physical activity and various exercises, which makes it more difficult to control their sugar. Because the body needs to protect itself from the cold, the body is more sensitive to stress hormones including glucocorticoids in winter, which may increase insulin resistance to a certain extent. In addition, when stimulated by severe cold, many people with diabetes tend to consume more energy to help keep out the cold.
Zhang Ying reminds: Physical activity can increase insulin sensitivity and is beneficial to blood sugar control. Diabetic patients should pay special attention to blood sugar monitoring in winter. They should still pay attention to “control their mouths and open their legs”. They should also pay attention to controlling their diet and drinking when relatives and friends gather for dinner. If you find that the previous blood sugar-lowering program cannot effectively control blood sugar, you should seek medical treatment in time.
Strengthen ventilation to prevent infection
Recently, there has been a high incidence of various respiratory infectious diseases. In order to prevent cold, many “sugar lovers” often turn on the heater and close the doors and windows in winter, which creates an excellent environment for the breeding and spread of germs. Zhang Ying suggested that everyone should pay more attention to opening windows for ventilation and ventilation to reduce the concentration of germs in indoor air and prevent infection. When the weather is fine, you can appropriately increase outdoor activities, breathe fresh air, enhance immunity, and also help control blood sugar. However, during outdoor activities, you should pay attention to adding or removing clothes at any time to prevent the occurrence of hypoglycemia. You can carry emergency foods such as chocolates and candies with you.
Soak your feet carefully to prevent “sugar feet”
Diabetic foot is one of the chronic complications of diabetes. Dry and cracked skin is prone to occur in winter. People usually focus on moisturizing the face and hands, but often neglect the feet. Zhang Ying reminds people with diabetes to pay attention to the following two points for foot care in winter:
First of all, diabetic patients should check their feet every day, focusing on the soles of the feet, between the toes and the deformed parts of the feet. In particular, they cannot ignore the moisturizing and care of the feet to prevent cracks or dryness, itching and scratches, which may cause huge wounds that are difficult to heal. Identify potential problems and intervene early.
Secondly, soaking feet in winter is a good health care method, but for diabetic patients, due to the existence of diabetic peripheral neuropathy, varying degrees of peripheral nerve sensory loss may occur, resulting in a slow perception of water temperature. If the water temperature is too high but not detected, it can cause burns on the feet and lead to infection, which can easily lead to diabetic foot. The same situation can also be seen in burns caused by electric blankets, hot water bottles and various heaters. Therefore, people with diabetes must be careful when soaking their feet or using various heaters. Use your hands or ask family members to feel the temperature to prevent burns. In addition, dry the spaces between your toes after soaking your feet to prevent the skin between the toes from rupturing and increasing the risk of infection.
Controlling sugar should also “protect the heart and brain”
Low temperatures in winter cause the human body’s blood vessels to constrict, increasing the risk of cardiovascular and cerebrovascular diseases. Diabetic patients are 2 to 4 times more likely to develop coronary heart disease than non-diabetic patients, and their probability of myocardial infarction is almost the same as that of patients with coronary heart disease.
Therefore, Zhang Ying reminds people with diabetes that in addition to controlling their blood sugar, they should also comprehensively control various metabolic risk factors, prevent and reduce diabetes-related complications, and avoid cardiovascular and cerebrovascular diseases. It is recommended that you do the following on a daily basis:
1. Keep “blood sugar, blood pressure, and blood lipid levels” up to standard;
2. Maintain a healthy weight;
3. Take relevant anti-diabetic, antihypertensive, lipid-lowering, anticoagulant and other drugs as directed by your doctor;
4. Eat in moderation and avoid overeating;
5. Keep warm and avoid cold-induced diseases;
6. Keep stool smooth;
7. Quit smoking and limit alcohol;
8. Exercise reasonably.