Diabetes and exercise : MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia

Diabetes and exercise go hand in hand, at least when it comes to managing your diabetes

Diabetic Athlete's Handbook

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  • Diabetes and exercise go hand in hand. The importance of exercise when you have diabetes cannot be under estimated. But, what are the top diabetes exercise programs? And, how does exercise affect diabetes?

    Living an active lifestyle can seem overwhelming. Often, people think they must join a gym or buy expensive work-out equipment. This is simply not the case. Your diabetes and exercise routine can be done almost anywhere!

  • Aim for 150 minutes of moderate activities such as walking, biking or swimming each week, in three to five sessions. Strength training is important, too: The more muscle you have, the less likely you are to store excess glucose as fat, says Sheri Colberg, emeritus professor of exercise science at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, and a specialist in diabetes and exercise. Try to do eight to 10 repetitions of eight to 10 different moves two to three times each week, using your own body weight or tools such as exercise bands or hand weights.

    Diabetes and exercise should go hand in hand. If you hate to exercise, it's time to change your thinking about what counts toward your daily activity goals. Physical activity comes in many different forms and may include fun activities like dancing, yoga, tai chi, gardening, and more. In fact, daily movement of any type—even if it's not done as part of a structured exercise plan—can help lower your blood sugar levels, improve your cholesterol and blood pressure, and enhance your mood, among other benefits. Learn what you need to know about safely and effectively incorporating exercise into your diabetes life. The time to get started is today!

    Managing diabetes can be a stressful, time-consuming process. But what happens when you add exercise to the mix?

    Listen now to learn about diabetes and exercise: (MP3 3:45 min 2.2MB) Play

    The following is a partial transcript taken from this audio broadcast:
    "If somebody with diabetes has nerve damage one thing they need to make sure is that they're not doing exercise that can hurt themselves for instance walking on a treadmill can be dangerous because they can stumble or fall if they lose feeling in their feet."

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  • can be an important motivator, particularly for people over 60, according to Vicki Conn, PhD, the associate dean for research at the University of Missouri in Columbia, Mo., who has studied diabetes and exercise.

    Having a friend call or setting up an exercise "contract" with a buddy may help. "One of the things we found with our meta-analysis is that behavioral strategies work better; that means setting up some sort of stimulus in the environment where you exercise," says Conn.

Diabetes and Exercise Diabetes and Exercise

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