When diabetes is uncontrolled, it can cause complications such as blindness, kidney failure, heart disease, and loss of toes, feet and even legs. You can stay healthy and help to prevent these problems by learning how to manage your diabetes.

Every Day

  • eat healthy foods such as vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and low-fat dairy products

  • be physically active for at least 30 minutes

  • check your blood sugar

  • take the medications, if any, that your health care team has prescribed for you

  • check your feet and skin for any sores or cuts

At Every Visit to your Health Care Provider

  • get your blood pressure, weight, and feet checked

  • go over your blood sugar records and your nutrition and physical activity plan

At Least Twice a Year

  • get an A1C test

  • get a dental exam

At Least Once a Year

  • get an eye exam

  • get a complete foot exam

  • get a urine and blood test to check your kidneys

  • get your cholesterol checked

  • get a flu shot in the fall

At least once in a lifetime, be sure to get a pneumonia shot.

Speak to your doctor or health care provider about how you can learn to manage your diabetes, stay healthy, and prevent complications.


  • Easy Eating for Busy People

  • Diabetes and Your Feet

  • Diabetes Can Harm Your Vision

  • Know Your Blood Sugar Numbers

  • Diabetes Can Increase Your Risk for Heart Attack and Stroke

Fact Sheets

  • What is Diabetes?

  • Do I Have Diabetes?

  • I Have Diabetes. What Can I Do to Stay Healthy?

  • Low Blood Sugar, High Blood Sugar, and Sick Days

  • Tips to Help You Feel Better and Stay Healthy

  • What is the A1C Test?

These materials are available from the Massachusetts Health Promotion Clearinghouse at www.maclearinghouse.com/category/DIAB.html.

This information is provided by Diabetes Prevention and Control Program within the Department of Public Health.