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4 Steps to Help Combat Type 2 Diabetes in the BIPOC Community

Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic and the numerous issues that have come with it, many other aspects of health have been sidelined. Quite specifically, diabetes – a disease that hits home for the BIPOC Community. I understand how it important it is for the community to combat this disease. It is not easy, but it is also NOT impossible! A diagnosis of prediabetes still leaves a chance for an individual to stave off Type 2 Diabetes. I work professionally with clients battling with obesity and who are at risk for Type 2 Diabetes if changes to their lifestyle are not implemented.

Here are 4 tips I encourage you to try:

1) Physical activity for at least 30 minutes a day

Take up a sport or make some time for physical activity – you can start with just 30 minutes a day. If you exercise right when you wake up (possibly with your work clothes on too), you do not have to worry about procrastinating with your workout. Slowly, you can work your way up to more rigorous exercises and for a longer duration. I do not recommend punishing yourself (doin' the most) in the gym when you are out of shape by rigorous exercise that you are not used to. This is counter-productive and very inefficient. Physical activity will help you lose weight and have fun doing it!

2) Cook at home more often than you eat out

When you cook at home, you save money and get a chance to cut down on the calories! You know exactly what goes into your dishes when you cook at home with fine ingredients.

I have learned from my mother and her side of the family that cooking is a great pastime that can foster within you a sense of pride and independence! For some great recipes, you can also watch my television show Flavours of Africa on OMNI Television (Rogers) airing on Channel 16 at 6:00 pm on Sundays and 10:00 am Fridays.

Here is the link to our YouTube Channel which has some of our episodes! Take a look: FlavoursofAfrica - YouTube

3) Don't go grocery shopping when you are hungry

Make sure when you are shopping for groceries, you have already eaten a meal! This will prevent you from emotionally buying (and eating) more than you need to. As much as you can, you want to avoid buying more food than you actually need and you'll also avoid choosing items high in fat and sugar. Remember, Type 2 Diabetes isn't only about watching your sugar intake - it's also about being mindful of the fatty foods that you consume and getting enough exercise.

4) Try going 3 days without sugar

Challenge yourself – you can do it! Go three days without sweet drinks and sweet foods that you typically consume. Yes, this means, giving up chocolate, pop (soda if you are American), ice cream, cakes, cookies, brownies, pies, fruit juice, candy, syrups and cereals. At the end of the third day, your craving for sugar will significantly decrease (if it's not gone completely). It's also an even better idea to incorporate sweet fruits with natural sugar into your diet as an alternative during this period!

**Come see me about your weight loss and health goals and we will work closely to figure out the causes of the overeating and implement personalized health strategies in your life.

Kevin Ufoegbune


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