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How to Manage Diabetes

Doctor’s hands

Some tips to help manage diabetes.


The goal in managing diabetes well is to keep your blood glucose level as close to normal as possible, as often as possible. That means maintaining a healthy glucose average - and also preventing glucose swings that are too high or too low. Properly managing diabetes helps you feel better and reduces the risk of developing diabetes-related complications. Blood sugars that are far outside the healthy range can affect your health in the present and put you at higher risk for the long-term complications of diabetes, such as heart disease, eye, kidney and nerve diseases and even death.

The exact glucose target level can vary by person. A person without diabetes generally has an average blood glucose level of around 6 mmol/L. A glucose target range for many people with diabetes before a meal is 4-7 mmol/L1. But a number of circumstances can affect your ability to hit that target. Your healthcare professional will give you guidance as to what your target glucose range should be.

All people with Type 1 diabetes must inject insulin to survive. Most people with Type 2 diabetes need diabetes medications, and sometimes insulin injections, to help manage their blood glucose level. All people with diabetes benefit from healthy eating and physical activity.

Tips to maintain good diabetes control2:

  • Make healthy food choices to avoid foods that make your blood sugar level spike.
  • Keep active. Be sure to speak with your healthcare professional to find an exercise balance that suits your needs, lifestyle and diabetes.2
  • Speak with your healthcare professional regularly, test your blood glucose as recommended and make smart choices to help keep your diabetes in check.




1 Ali Imran s, Agarwal G, et al. Diabetes Canada 2018 Clinical Practice Guidelines for the Prevention and Management of Diabetes in Canada: Targets for Glycemic Control. Can J Diabetes 2018;42(Suppl 1):S42-S46.

2 Gardner, A. (2017, March 15). How To Control Your Diabetes: 5 Tips To Help Diabetics Manage (M. Dansinger, Ed.). Retrieved March 8, 2021, from

Diabetes Canada. (2021, March). Managing your blood sugar. Retrieved March 12, 2021, from

Diabetes Canada. (n.d.). Management and self-care. Retrieved March 12, 2021, from