Diabetes and Self-Care

Self-care usually means to indulge in things that take care of you, so that you can stay physically, mentally, and emotionally well. This could look something like relaxing in a hot bath, pouring a glass of wine, or having an extra-large slice of cake. However, individuals diagnosed with diabetes must be careful when practicing self-care. Some activities can cause more stress than they relieve. Some can even cause dangerous situations resulting in medical interventions. 

Diabetes is not a competition with yourself.

It’s not surprising that self-care can be overwhelming for people experiencing diabetes. It can often feel that you are in competition with yourself. A study published by Marrero and colleagues (2023) found that most individuals with diabetes struggle with motivation and support for self-care. Diabetes can contribute to long-term damage or failure of different organs, according to the ADA. Therefore, self-care is necessary to limit potential organ damage and can reduce the likelihood of visits to the ER or hospitalizations.

Reach your goals while nurturing your wellbeing. There are seven self-care practices that can help:

  • Healthy eating
  • Being physically active
  • Monitoring blood glucose levels
  • Taking medications as prescribed
  • Using problem-solving skills
  • Developing healthy coping skills
  • Practicing risk-reduction behaviors

Remember to take a step back, prioritize and have grace with yourself. You are not alone.

Are you a Banner – University Family Care/ACC member? Ignite Your Health is a Virtual Community of Support for our members with a diagnosis of diabetes and those who support them! Learn more about it here.


NIH National Library of Medicine: Diagnosis and Classification of Diabetes Mellitus

NIH National Library of Medicine: Nutrition management of type 2 diabetes by primary care physicians: reported use and barriers