Understanding Blood Sugar: Benefits, Influences, and a how-to guide in measuring your blood glucose level

People living with diabetes need to regularly check their blood glucose levels. This allows them to respond to the ever-changing, and quite unpredictable needs of their body.

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What affects the changes in your blood sugar?

The blood glucose level changes according to how much sugar is being used by the body. For some people, this is regulated by an efficient system in the body. However, for people with diabetes, sugar in the blood is unstable because the insulin that is supposed to store and use the sugar is either produced too little or too much.

The sugar in the blood comes primarily from one’s food intake. The changes in the sugar level are affected by the amount of insulin that utilizes the sugar and the amount of physical exercise done by the person.

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Benefits of regular glucose monitoring

Knowing your glucose level allows you to evaluate the effect of several things on your body: the food you eat, the medicine you take, and even the amount of exercise you do daily.

Keeping a record of daily sugar levels is a great help for the patients as well as the healthcare professionals because it can be used as a tool for checking if a health care regimen is  working as it should be.

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How to measure your blood sugar level

One of the easiest and most popular ways of measuring glucose level is by using a glucose monitor, with test strips that analyze the blood from a pricked fingertip. People who do this are recommended to wash their hands before pricking their finger with a sterile needle, to minimize the risk of infection.

An automatic spring-loaded lancet could be used, or you could ask a trusted friend to do this for you, in case you are still not used to doing this by yourself. The end of the test strip is placed on the finger and blood easily enters the test strip. Depending on the glucose monitor used, this only lasts for a few seconds before the machine displays your sugar level.

Living with diabetes is not the easiest thing to do. You constantly have to be aware of the food you eat and how your body responds to it. There are other different ways to measure the glucose level. Some people measure it before every meal and using different parts of the body such as upper arm, forearm, or even the thighs as a source of blood. How about you, how do you monitor your glucose level?

4 Things to Expect in Pilates Classes

Stress, long nights, rush hour traffic, and an over-demanding boss can get a person all riled up and ready to explode. Instead of downing too many bottles of beer or wine, why not do something that will relax you without damaging your body? Going to the gym is one of the most therapeutic, stress-relieving activities you can engage in. The good news is that it is no longer limited to getting on a treadmill and stationary bikes. One can now sign up for Pilates classes.

Pilates is a gentle and relaxing activity that opens up the body and stretches the muscles. It also realigns your spine and promotes proper breathing. A lot of people swear by Pilates classes. It doesn’t hurt that it also tones and tightens your body,  which makes you look trim and slim. There are classes for Pilates in HK and they are available at local gyms and fitness centers. But before you enroll in one, here are four things you should expect:

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  1. A Medicine Ball – A medicine ball resembles a large beach ball but the former is much sturdier. It is used in Pilates classes to do stretching and core strengthening exercises. You will sit on top of the ball and balance yourself while doing different movements. Of course, it is natural for beginners to slip and fall at the end. The more you use it, the faster your core becomes stronger. This will enable you to execute different Pilates moves better.barefoot-on-grass
  2. Go Barefoot – When you join a Pilates class, you are required to take off your shoes and socks. This will allow you to move better on the floor or over the mat. It will be a good idea to ensure that you have clean feet before coming to class.pilates_mat-resized-600
  3. You Must Have a Mat – Some fitness gyms provide exercise mats to their members. However, if you’re very particular about using public property, you can bring your own exercise mat to class. You can buy this at any sporting good store or order it online before your classes start. You can use the same mat for yoga, abdominal exercises, or for some stretching before and after workout.image
  4. You Will Feel Sore – Pilates may look like a series of gentle stretching movements, but it is actually a pretty intense workout. It engages the back, abs, and all the rest of your muscle groups. Aside from not being able to execute the moves properly at first, you must also expect to ache and be sore in places you did not think existed. The good news is, the more you repeat the movements, the better you will get. The initial feeling of soreness will be replaced by toned and trim muscles.

Pilates is a discipline that focuses on breathing and relieving tension from the body. It is a total body workout that not only relaxes you, but also makes you feel centered and well-rested. It’s worth trying out, especially with the upcoming holiday season.