Modifying eating habits and increasing physical activity are typically the first steps toward reducing blood sugar levels. At UCSF Medical Center, all patients work with their doctor and certified dietician to develop a dietary plan. Our Teaching Center conducts workshops that provide patients with information on food nutrient content, healthy cooking and exercise.
People with type 1 diabetes require multiple insulin injections each day to maintain safe insulin levels. Insulin is often required to treat type 2 diabetes too. Using an insulin pump is an alternative to injections. The pump is about the size of a pager and is usually worn on your belt. Insulin is delivered through a small tube (catheter) that is placed under the skin (usually in the abdomen).
Sometimes blood sugar levels remain high in people with type 2 diabetes even though they eat in a healthy manner and exercise. When this happens, medications taken in pill form may be prescribed. The medications work in several different ways. These include improve the effectiveness of the body's natural insulin, reduce blood sugar production, increase insulin production and inhibit blood sugar absorption. Oral diabetes medications are sometimes taken in combination with insulin.