Be Aggressive Control Type 2 Diabetes

Being aggressive means taking control of your type 2 diabetes today. It also means having a winning attitude. It is important to take steps now to keep your blood sugar at or near normal levels so you can prevent or delay serious complications in the future. These complications could be blindness, losing a limb, kidney problems, or heart disease. There is good news. If you follow an aggressive program aimed at keeping your blood sugar at or near normal levels, you can prevent or delay these complications of type 2 diabetes. An aggressive program includes a healthy diet, regular exercise, and if necessary, taking the proper medication.

Eating A Balanced Diet

  • Eating healthy is one of the easiest ways to help control type 2 diabetes. It is important to select the right foods and portion sizes. You should also eat balanced meals throughout the day. Some helpful hints for healthy eating:
  • Make simple changes to reduce the fat in your diet. A good place to start is to replace whole milk with skim milk.
  • Make a meal plan. Shop with specific meals in mind. Keep a written log of what, how much and when you eat. This will help you identify bad eating habits so you can change them for the better.
  • Eat a variety of foods. You should stay away from foods high in sugar like soda, cake, cookies, and candy.


Any physical activity is good for you. Ask your doctor what kinds of exercises are best for you. Then start doing them. When exercising, keep a few things in mind:

  • Start slowly. Focus on activities you can do regularly. And don’t overdo it!
  • Start with easy changes. Take the stairs instead of the elevator.
  • Exercise at the same time each day. It will soon become a routine!
  • Try new activities so you don’t get bored. Take a walk in a park or ride your bicycle on a trail instead of in your neighborhood.

Take Your Medications

Sometimes you need more than just a healthy diet and regular exercise to control your blood sugar. Your doctor may add a medication, such as Glucophage XR or Glucovance. These medications and others like them can make it more convenient for you to control your blood sugar levels.

Check Your Blood Sugar

Two important tests for checking your blood sugar are the fasting blood glucose test and the HbA1c test also know as the A1c test. Both tests are conducted in a doctor’s office. Fasting blood glucose gives your doctor your latest fasting sugar levels. However, the HbA1c test can give your doctor your average blood sugar levels over a period of three months. Since it covers a longer period of time, this test shows how well you are managing your condition. The American Diabetes Association recommends that your goals for these test should be:

  • Fasting Blood Glucose. You should have a fasting blood sugar level in the 80 to 120 mg/dL range.
  • HbA1c. You should keep your HbA1c level to less than 7 percent.

See Your Doctor

Stay in touch with your doctor and diabetes educator. They may learn new things or notice changes in you that require a new plan. Remember, knowledge really is power!

Make regular appointments with your doctor. Be sure to use this time to ask him or her any questions.

You should have regular check ups to check your:

  • HbA1c level.
  • Cholesterol level.
  • Blood pressure.
  • Foot exam.
  • Eye exam.
  • Weight and height.

Sometimes people are too relaxed about managing their condition, and in the long run that can lead to serious complications like becoming blind, losing a limb or having kidney problems or heart disease. Other people make the mistake and believe that diabetes means they will have poor health for life.

There’s a bright side. Type 2 diabetes is manageable. By aggressively controlling the condition – eating right, exercising regularly, and taking the right medicine, if necessary.

Take Control Checklist

Regular checkups with your doctor play a key role in your good health and in taking care of your diabetes. Below are some starting points to help you make the most out of your next doctor’s visit.

What is my HbA1c? __________________________________
What is my cholesterol level? __________________________
What is my blood pressure? ___________________________
Do you have comments on my foot exam? ______________
Do you have any comments on my eye exam? __________
What are my weight and height? W ________ H _________

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Constance Brown-Riggs, MSEd, RD, CDE, CDN—an award-winning RD, certified diabetes educator, and past national spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, is the author of The African American Guide to Living Well With Diabetes, which received the Favorably Reviewed designation from the American Association of Diabetes Educators, and Eating Soulfully and Healthfully with Diabetes.

Dr. Lori Shemek, PhD, CNC, CLC, the best-selling author of “Fire-Up Your Fat Burn! and leading health and weight loss expert, is also known as “The Inflammation Terminator.” She has made it her mission to educate the public on the toxic effects of certain foods and lifestyle choices and how they create inflammation in the body. She is a leading authority on inflammation and its role in weight loss, preventing disease and optimizing health.

Rebecca Bitzer – MS, RD/LD, CEDRD is an award-winning Registered Dietitian, writer, speaker, blogger, and REBEL Dietitian business owner. Rebecca and her team of six Registered Dietitians have counseled thousands of clients struggling with diabetes for over twenty-five years. They work closely with each other along with internists, endocrinologists, therapists, and families.

Maureen Sullivan – RN, CDE has worked for many years as a Registered Nurse, most of them in emergency and trauma services. She is a Certified Emergency Nurse, Certified Diabetes Educator, and the former manager of a hospital stroke program. Maureen’s wealth of knowledge, passion for nursing and education, and ability to engage people makes her an excellent teacher and a captivating lecturer. Recently, Maureen has been concentrating on writing, speaking and teaching, as well as working on her award-winning weekly podcast, “The Health and Humor Show.”

Lauren Harris-Pincus, MS, RDN is a nutrition communications specialist, registered dietitian in private practice, social media consultant, speaker, spokesperson and corporate consultant. She is currently the owner of Nutrition Starring YOU, LLC and Lauren strongly believes that we should “Think Healthy, not Skinny”, and “EveryBODY is unique, your diet should be too”. Lauren was co-host of the Family Food Experts Kitchen radio show, available for listening on iHeart Radio and iTunes. Also known as one of the “NutritionBabes”, Lauren co-founded, a popular Health and Wellness website in 2009. was voted one of Healthline’s Top 100 Health Blogs in 2011, 2012 and 2013.

Mark Heyman, PhD, CDE is a clinical health psychologist and the director of the Center for Diabetes and Mental Health (CDMH). In addition to treating patients with type 1 and type 2 diabetes, Dr. Heyman provides training for health care providers on how to identify and address the emotional and behavioral aspects of diabetes in their patients. He also works with pharmaceutical and medical device companies to help them understand these issues and incorporate this information into their sales, marketing, and patient education materials. He is particularly interested in empirically supported behavioral interventions that promote behavior change and improve physical and mental health in people with diabetes.

Katie Ferraro, MPH, RD, CDE is a nationally-recognized registered dietitian, certified diabetes educator and author with an expertise in nutrition communications and curriculum development. She is the co-author of “Diet Therapy in Advanced Practice Nursing” (McGraw Hill, 2014) and an Assistant Clinical Professor of Nutrition at the University of California San Francisco and University of San Diego’s graduate schools of nursing.

Dr. Beverly S. Adler, PhD, CDE (aka “Dr. Bev”) is a clinical psychologist and certified diabetes educator, author and speaker. She specializes treating the emotional issues of people with diabetes. In her private practice, she provides individual, family and/or group therapy utilizing a cognitive behavior therapy orientation, combined with a spiritual approach. Her goal is to empower her patients to manage their diabetes.

Dr. Bev is the author of two self-help diabetes books. She has written numerous articles which are published in print and online – always focused on diabetes from the emotional perspective. She also speaks to audiences of people living with diabetes, as well as, to audiences of healthcare professionals and diabetes educators. Dr. Bev, herself, has been living successfully with type 1 diabetes for 40+ years.

In August 2016, Dr. Bev was honored to receive the “CDE Entrepreneur of the Year” Award from her Metropolitan NY Association of Diabetes Educators.

Jill Weisenberger, MS, RDN, CDE, FAND is an internationally recognized nutrition and diabetes expert with more than two decades experience. Through writing, speaking and one-on-one coaching, Jill empowers people to grab control of their health. She has worked as both a nutrition counselor and a diabetes educator in the hospital and research settings, and now in private practice in Newport News, VA. Jill is known for her practical approach and caring attitude. Her no-nonsense strategies to eating well include foods that both taste good and are good for you.

Marlene Koch (pronounced ‘cook’) is a nationally recognized nutritionist, popular TV personality and New York Times bestselling author. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from UCLA with a Bachelor’s degree in Nutritional Science. She is a registered dietitian and one of a select group of dietitians to hold an advanced certificate in Child and Adolescent Weight Management from the Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics.

Marlene has taught professional chefs from the American Culinary Federation the principles of healthy cooking and eating. She has been adjunct Nutrition professor and cooking instructor for Columbus State College and the Columbus State Culinary Academy, and she is a nationally recognized expert in weight loss, diabetes, child and adolescent nutrition, and sugar substitutes.

Marlene has sold over one million cookbooks, and is a regular guest on QVC.

Barbara Ruhs – MS, RDN is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and owner of Neighborhood Nutrition LLC, a consulting firm focused on providing solutions to help food companies and supermarkets improve consumer health & wellness. She’s a former supermarket dietitian and has run a successful business for 17 years. A leader in the field of nutrition, her mission is to help people by impacting the way food is produced, marketed and sold. She’s a strong advocate for supermarket dietitians and believes the retail food industry has the greatest potential to impact public health.

Cheryl Orlansky has over 25 years of experience in health promotion and chronic disease prevention and management. Her first career as a registered dental hygienist led her towards a path of wellness and nutrition! Her expertise is in diabetes, weight management and cardiovascular disease for individuals and groups. She works in a large private practice including endocrinology, internal medicine, rheumatology, neurology and sleep medicine. She is an award winning dietitian with current leadership positions in state and local dietetics organizations.

She has been interviewed and quoted in media outlets for WebMD, Atlanta Sports and Fitness, Georgia Public Broadcasting, and the Atlanta Journal and Constitution. She has partnered with V-103 Radio to lead supermarket tours as part of a community outreach during National Nutrition Month.

Cheryl helps her clients reach balance through lifestyle choices: cooking and eating, activity and purpose in life.

Jackie Newgent, RDN, CDN, is a registered dietitian nutritionist and classically-trained chef. With a passion for helping people (including her father) with diabetes, she’s author of The With or Without Meat Cookbook: The Flexible Approach to Flavorful Diabetes Cooking and the award-winning The All‐Natural Diabetes Cookbook, both published by the American Diabetes Association. Jackie is also author of 1,000 Low-Calorie Recipes and Big Green Cookbook. Her next book, The All-Natural Diabetes Cookbook—2nd Edition, was published in 2015.

Nutritionist Rania Batayneh, MPH is the author of the best-selling book, The One One One Diet. She holds a master’s degree in public health nutrition from the University of Michigan School of Public Health and is also a Wellcoaches Certified Health and Wellness Coach endorsed by the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM).

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