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P1136 Women and Heart Disease

Chapter 3: Diabetes and heart disease Controlling blood sugar Keeping blood sugar under control can help you feel your best. It also reduces chances of damage to artery walls, and helps keep blood pressure and lipid levels low. Check your blood sugar before and after you exercise. Keep in mind that exercise lowers your blood sugar. When exercising, have glucose tablets or a snack handy if you feel symptoms of low blood sugar. Don’t exercise if you’re sick, or if your blood sugar or blood pressure levels are too high. Drink plenty of water and other fluids while exercising. Carbohydrates (or carbs) are the body’s main source of fuel, but carbs raise blood sugar more than any other type of food. To prevent this, limit the amount of carbs you eat at one time. Most people can have 3 to 4 servings of carbs at meals, and 1 to 2 servings at snacks. Ask your healthcare provider or diabetes educator how many servings are right for you. Regular checkups with your healthcare provider will help keep you on the path to better health and keep your blood sugar levels under control. One serving of carbs is 15 grams. Each of the following makes one serving of carbs: 77 1/2 cup of kidney beans 77 1 slice of bread 77 1/3 cup cooked pasta 77 1 cup fat-free milk 77 1 small apple (unpeeled) 77 1/2 cup mashed potatoes or cooked corn 32


P1136 Women and Heart Disease
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