Website Helps Diabetes Patients Through Holidays - WICU12 HD WSEE Erie, PA News, Sports, Weather, Events

Website Helps Diabetes Patients Through Holidays

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The inevitable sugar rush of the holidays poses a challenge for people living with diabetes, but it's not so different from the pressure felt by everyone this time of year.

"Everyone is faced with millions of cookies and mountains of desserts and things of that nature, so I think it's really challenges that anybody else faces," said Registered Dietician Leslie Lawton. She's also a Certified Diabetes Educator, affiliated with UPMC Hamot.

The National Diabetes Education Program is an ally for people with diabetes, and they're promoting their "Just One Step" initiative, to help patients set goals and track progress online.

It's a proven weight management technique.

"Everyone's usually got access to their computer, and that might be a more easy resource to access," Lawton said. "I think it could help with the accountability as well."

It's here just in time to jump start those New Years resolutions, and the key is to set small, sustainable goals.

"They're not gonna try to make three million changes all at one time if they plan on being successful," said Lawton, "so whether it's trying to change your health or any other change you make in your life, it's gonna be a gradual step process, and it's going to be one thing at a time."

You can set both food and activity- related goals on the site, to keep you on track through the holiday season.

To keep a balanced diet, you don't have to stick to fruits and vegetables. You can still enjoy your favorite holiday goodies, and, in fact, restricting yourself could actually be worse.

"There are no illegal foods," said Lawton, 'it's more a matter of how it fits into the overall picture, and I'm a big advocate of encouraging people to avoid being overly restrictive, because if you push that pendulum one direction, it inevitably might come back the other way."

Of course you want to make sure you keep close tabs on blood sugar levels, when indulging in the holiday spirit.

And Lawton has one more piece of advice, regardless of if you have diabetes:

"Nourish yourself with the company of loved ones. Keep in mind there are other ways to nourish yourself than just food at the holidays."

To see how Just One Step can help you kick start your New Years resolution, and keep you on track through the holidays, click here.

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