Frequent exercise of any kind is the key to controlling your type 2 diabetes. When you have diabetes, you have too much glucose or sugar in your blood. As you exercise, the cells in your muscles begin to respond better to insulin and are able to use glucose. But this effect only lasts a day or two, so you need to exercise regularly to keep up the insulin sensitivity. Even moderate increases in exercise can help your body normalize your glucose levels.
Research has shown that physical activity can:
Lower your blood glucose
- Lower your blood pressure
- Lower your bad cholesterol and raise your good cholesterol
- Improve your body's ability to use insulin
- Lower your risk for heart disease and stroke
- Keep your heart and bones strong
- Keep your joints flexible
- Help you lose weight
- Reduce your body fat
- Give you more energy
- Reduce your stress levels
Take control of your diabetes with exercise
If you have been diagnosed with pre-diabetes, physical activity can play an important part in preventing type 2 diabetes. Research has showed that even a modest weight loss of 5 to 7 percent—for example, 10 to 15 pounds for a 200-pound person—can delay and possibly prevent type 2 diabetes.
While walking is one of the easiest, almost all diabetics can find a safe and effective exercise. All physical activity you do during the day counts. That includes walking from the parking lot into the store, mowing the lawn, housework and golfing. The idea is to move more throughout the day. Ask your doctor and research exercise options to find the right exercise level for you.
Type 1 Diabetes Exercise
Exercise can lower blood glucose levels during the exercise and for a time afterwards. Because patients with type 1 diabetes don't produce much or any insulin at all, exercise can cause their glucose levels to go too low. Consult your physician before you begin any exercise program, so you'll understand what exercise precautions you should take.