Tanenberg’s 10 Commandments for People With Diabetes

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  1. Eat balanced meals and try to maintain a healthy weight.
  2. Be as active as you can be. Exercise regularly if your doctor recommends it for you.
  3. Have your cholesterol level (fasting lipid panel) checked at least once a year. Your LDL (“bad”) cholesterol level tells if you are at risk for a heart attack. It should be less than 100 mg/ dl or less than 70 mg/dl if you have cardiovascular disease already.
  4. Have a special urine test for small amounts of protein called microalbumin done once a year to check your kidneys. The result should be below 30.
  5. Stop smoking! Ask for help if you need it.
  6. Have a foot exam by an MD or podiatrist (DPM) to check for nerve and vascular damage every year. Check your own feet every day.
  7. Keep your blood glucose in control. Your doctor will tell you where yours should be. The A1C lab test can tell how well you are doing. Your A1C should be less than 7%. A normal A1C for someone without diabetes is in the 4% to 6% range.
  8. Keep your blood pressure at 130/80 below with medication(s) if needed.
  9. Have a dilated eye exam done at least once a year by an eye doctor (ophthalmologist or optometrist).
  10. Take an aspirin every day for cardiovascular risk prevention (unless your doctor says this isn’t right for you). Individuals under 21 years old should not take aspirin.

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