Stress and Diabetes: What You Should Do To Stay Alive - AMEBO ONLINE NEWSPAPER


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Stress and Diabetes: What You Should Do To Stay Alive

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Diabetes management is a lifelong process. This can add stress to your daily life. Stress can be a major barrier to effective glucose control. Stress hormones in your body may directly affect glucose levels. If you’re experiencing stress or feeling threatened, your body reacts. This is called the fight-or-flight response. This response elevates your hormone levels and causes your nerve cells to fire.


During this response, your body releases adrenaline and cortisol into your bloodstream and your respiratory rates increase. Your body directs blood to the muscles and limbs, allowing you to fight the situation. Your body may not be able to process the glucose released by your firing nerve cells if you have diabetes. If you can’t convert the glucose into energy, it builds up in the bloodstream. This causes your blood glucose levels to rise.

Constant stress from long-term problems with blood glucose can also wear you down mentally and physically. This may make managing your diabetes difficult.

Symptoms Of Stress

Sometimes, the symptoms of stress are subtle and you may not notice them. That is why recognizing the symptoms can help you identify stress and take steps to manage it.


If you’re stressed, you may experience:

1. headaches

2. muscle pain or tension

3. sleeping too much or too little

4. general feelings of illness

5. fatigue

If you’re stressed, you may feel:

1. unmotivated

2. irritable

3. depressed

4. restless

5. anxious

It’s also common for people who are stressed to engage in behavior that may be out of character. This includes:

1. withdrawing from friends and family

2. eating too much or too little

3. acting out in anger

4. drinking alcohol to excess

5. using tobacco

How to reduce your stress levels:


Reducing mental stress

Meditating can help remove negative thoughts and allow your mind to relax. Consider starting each morning with a 15-minute meditation. This will set the tone for the rest of your day.

Reducing emotional stress

If you find yourself in an unwanted emotional state, take five minutes to be by yourself. Remove yourself from your current environment. Find a quiet space to focus on your breathing.

Put your hand on your belly, and feel it rise and fall. Inhale deep breaths, and exhale slowly and loudly. This will slow your heartbeat down, and help bring you back to a stable emotional state. This act of centering yourself may improve how you deal with whatever is causing the stress.


Reducing physical stress

Try on any form of exercise, and you should aim for 30 minutes of cardiovascular exercise per day. You can do 10 minutes of exercise when you wake up, 10 minutes in the afternoon, and 10 minutes before you go to sleep.

Reducing family stress

If you’re feeling overwhelmed by family obligations, remember that it’s OK to say no. Your family will understand if you can’t make it to all events. If your stress stems from not seeing your family as often as you’d like, consider having a family fun night weekly or biweekly. You can play board games or participate in outdoor activities. 

Reducing work stress

Stress issues at work can come home with you. Talk to your supervisor if you’re having a hard time at work. There may be options to alleviate or work through any issues you may be having.


If that doesn’t help, you may want to consider transferring to a different department or even finding a new job altogether. Although stress levels elevate when looking for a new job, you may find it settles down with a different position better suited for your skills and personality.

I hope you can find something along all that I just aforementioned to help you with the management of diabetes or for a loved one. 

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