As we enter into the New Year, our hearts and minds may fill with resolutions, aspirations and hope for change in 2021. 

Some may say that we can set goals and intentions at any point in the year, which is very true; however, for others, the fresh mark of a new calendar year can provide inspiration and extra motivation to hit the ground running.

Maybe we want to pay off debt, lose some weight, spend more time with family or pick up a new hobby? For those living with diabetes, the New Year can be a great time to refocus and take a good look at areas in your self-management that need improvement. 

Start with reviewing your blood glucose logs or A1C numbers for 2020. Could they they have been lower, could you have spent more time in range, did you forget to log a dose or could you have made better food choices to more effectively manage your blood glucose levels?

Take the time to reflect on this past year and write out a few goals and intentions that might bring better management and a healthier you. Brainstorm your ideas and talk them over with your doctor at your next visit. 

Check out the goals and intentions below. These suggestions may help uncover what to focus on in your own wellness journey.

Pick one or two goals or intentions and write an action plan to achieve those goals. By creating an action plan, you're setting yourself up for success to achieve the things you want to be more intentional about.

Let’s make 2021 your best year yet! 
Goals and Intentions for Better Diabetes Management
  • Lose weight. Losing even 3-5 percent of your total body weight can have improvements on your blood glucose numbers.

  • Exercise more. Start with 30 minutes a day and pick an activity you enjoy – walking, yoga, biking, strength training (just to name a few).

  • Take a walk after meals. Walking after meals helps to manage blood glucose levels. 

  • Talk with your healthcare provider or dietitian and establish your proper carbohydrate level. Determine your number and stick to it. For those needing lower-carbohydrate options, focus on easy swaps, such as spaghetti squash for pasta, cauliflower rice for regular rice ad lettuce wraps for buns and taco shells.
  • Incorporate more lean proteins, vegetables and healthy fats into your diet.

  • Try a new therapy – have you considered a continuous glucose monitor or an insulin pump to better manage your diabetes? Start this conversation with your doctor and find out if you're a good candidate.

  • Better foot and skin care – purchase a pair of diabetic shoes and get routine skin checks.

  • Start or improve your carbohydrate counting and meal planning. Properly counting your carbs will ensure you are giving yourself the most accurate amount of insulin. Meal planning will help prevent poor food choices and drive thrus. 

  • Determine what your your “trigger foods" are and understand the proper portion size of that food. Take a look at your numbers two hours after meals and see which specific foods cause your blood glucose to spike more than others. 
January 19-25 is National Healthy Weight Week. Achieving your ideal "healthy weight" can drastically improve your diabetes self-management and your health overall.

Improving your diet and reducing your weight can also lower your blood-pressure and bad cholesterol, raise good cholesterol, reduce chances of cancer, take stress off of your joints, improve digestion and more.

As always, talk with your doctor or healthcare provider before you begin a weight loss program.
Tips to Achieve Your "Healthy Weight"
  • Track your meals and calorie intake; be sure to stay at or under your daily calorie target. (Talk with your doctor to determine your specific daily calorie target that supports your weigh loss goal.)

  • Use an app like MyFitnessPal or purchase a calorie counting book that lists calorie counts for most foods and restaurant menu items. Here is a popular one.

  • Incorporate activity into your day. Park farther from the door, take the stairs, walk around the house, ditch the car if your destination is in walking distance, walk your dog.

  • Find ways to enjoy lower calorie and nutrient-dense meals. A sprinkle of cheese or a drizzle of dressing can jazz up low-calorie vegetables and salads, just be careful of the amount. Dipping your fork into your favorite dressing is a great tip to better enjoy a salad.

  • Moderation, never deprivation. Enjoy foods you like while still adhering to your calorie goal, just work them in to your daily calorie allotment. Your calorie goal is like a bank account, spend it wisely.

  • Find a couple "special" items in your diet that help keep you satisfied and not deprived. This will keep cravings in check and prevent you from wanting to overdo it later. Perhaps it's a little cream in your coffee, a couple pieces of dark or sugar free chocolate after dinner, a sprinkle of cheese in your salad or a couple strips of bacon at breakfast. These items take the edge off of deprivation and curb the urge to binge eat. Just be sure they work into your daily calorie and carbohydrate goal.

  • Set two or three daily non-negotiables, such as eating protein at every meal and not going over your daily established carbohydrate level. These "non-negotiables" are actions you will always be sure to practice each day.

  • Hydrate! Drink plenty of water. Sometimes hunger is disguised as dehydration. Make your water more enjoyable by adding low or no calorie flavorings such as fresh lemon or a sugar-free drink mix packet.
People with diabetes often experience dry skin. High levels of blood glucose can cause skin to become dry. Frigid winter months can make dry skin even worse.

If dry skin is not managed, it can crack, itch and get infected. Diabetes can cause poor circulation, which inhibits wound healing due to the lack of blood flow that carries vital healing nutrients to the wound; therefore, it is extremely important to prevent infection from starting.

Check out the tips below to help combat winter dryness and protect yourself during the winter months and beyond!
Skin Care Tips to Combat Winter Dryness

  • Moisturize. Use a good quality moisturizer and use it often.*

  • Moisturize your skin immediately after bathing or showering.

  • Avoid super hot baths or showers and don't take super long baths or showers.

  • Exfoliate your body in order to remove dead skin, but be sure not to exfoliate over any open wounds or sores.

  • Hydrate! Drink plenty of water, enough so your urine is pale yellow.

  • Follow-up with your doctor on any new sores or wounds, especially those that are not healing.

  • Manage your diabetes more effectively - spend more time in range and get your A1C down. Poorly managed diabetes can make dry skin worse.

  • Protect skin from direct exposure to cold. Cover up when going outside in the frigid temperatures.

*Looking for a high quality moisturizer? Try Hawaiin Moon Aloe, available to order through DMS.

"Hawaiian Moon Aloe is safe and 98.5% natural. It penetrates the skin 7 layers deep, to the basal cell layer, hydrating and healing all the way up. The pure, organic Aloe Vera in Hawaiian Moon Aloe dilates the capillaries to stimulate & increase circulation (thereby, carrying away toxins), which aids in repairing your skin starting from the cellular level."

Request more info here.
HEALTHY KITCHEN: Clean Eating Favorites
From all of us at DMS, we wish you and your family a safe, joyous and healthy New Year!
Better Diabetes Management with InPen - Smart Insulin Pen
Key Features
  • Reusable for one year - no charging needed
  • Keeps track of your active insulin
  • Reminds you to dose
  • Monitors insulin temperature
  • Automatically logs doses
  • Integrates with CGMs
  • Creates shareable reports with time-based meal analysis
  • Integrates with Bluetooth-connected glucose meters
  • Helps you make decisions based on your data
  • Available through your pharmacy benefit for as little as $35.
Struggled with her multiple daily injections.
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Insulin Pump Therapy means freedom from multiple daily injections, better blood glucose control, flexibility with daily activities and an enhanced quality of life.

Learn about the benefits of adding an insulin pump to your CGM therapy.
Request more information today.

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