Type 1 diabetes can't be prevented. But an array of healthy lifestyle choices may help prevent prediabetes, type 2 diabetes, and gestational diabetes. If you already have risk factors such as a family history of diabetes, a large birth-weight baby, or a history of gestational diabetes, it's especially important to incorporate healthy lifestyle changes into your life.

Eat Better

A daily diet of foods that are low in fat and calories—fruits, vegetables, and whole grains—is a simple and effective way to lower your risk of developing diabetes.

Learn more healthy eating tips for diabetics. »

Get More Exercise

Getting 30 minutes of moderate physical activity each day—a bike ride, light swimming, or a brisk daily walk—can help reduce your risk of diabetes and benefit your overall mental and physical health.

Get tips on starting and maintaining a safe exercise routine. »

Lose Excess Pounds

To keep your weight in a healthy range, especially as you age, you'll need to maintain a healthy diet and continue to exercise regularly. If you're overweight, losing even five percent of your body weight can reduce your risk of diabetes.

Using Preventive Medication

There are no drugs that can prevent type 1 diabetes, but certain oral diabetes drugs may reduce your risk of type 2 diabetes. Some of the more common preventive medications are:

  • Metformin (Glucophage)
  • Rosiglitazone (Avandia)

View more diabetes medication options. »