Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Type 2 Diabetes - Regular Exercise Is Vital for Diabetics

Apart from managing your intake of carbohydrates and reducing, or preferably avoiding table sugar all together, did you know there is another simple but really effective way to help you lower your blood sugar levels without drugs?

That simple but hugely often overlooked way is exercise.

Regular, frequent exercise suited to what you as an individual can handle, is vital for everyone's health but especially diabetics striving to come off all medication.

How exercise helps to lower blood sugar levels: When you exercise it creates an increase in sensitivity to the hormone insulin, which is responsible for helping your body to absorb the glucose, broken down food that is now 'energy' into the cells, which in turn helps to lower blood sugar levels. So, people living with Type 2 diabetes are actually suffering with insulin resistance, which is where the muscle, liver and fat cells do not respond as they should to insulin which is why more insulin is needed to help 'mop up' the excess glucose in the blood stream.

By exercising you are helping your body to kick-start its response to insulin again. Exercising aids your muscle cells to increase its uptake of glucose which, as a result, leaves less of it circulating in your bloodstream both during and after doing the physical activity. So when it comes to testing your blood sugar afterwards you should get a lower blood sugar reading than before you started.

Obviously the effects of exercise on blood sugar levels are going to be different from person to person as we are all individual on a genetic level - but either way this is a very simple and easy way to start feeling more in control of your diabetes day by day.

Make new changes slowly: If you are new to exercising and/or are overweight, it would be wise to start off very gently, something like a 10 minute gentle walk daily at first is a good place to start if you currently do not exercise at all. Then work at gradually increasing the duration of the walk each week if you continue to feel good from it.

I would recommend speaking with your doctor though and even a personal trainer if your bank balance allows, as both can help devise an exercise plan that suits your body and can help to monitor your heart rate and blood sugar appropriately. I would also advise anyone who has or thinks they might have urine ketones, to speak to their doctor before exercising or making any changes to their current exercise regime - as you should not exercise if these are present.

Whether you are a Type 1 or Type 2 diabetic or a pre-diabetic, regular exercise is vital for positive blood sugar control, and will help you to stop simply relying on your medication. If you embark in the correct type of regular exercise you should not only see some great results in your lower blood sugar levels, but you will also lose weight.

Type 2 diabetes is not a condition you must just live with. By making simple changes to your daily routine, its possible to protect your heart, kidneys, eyes and limbs from the damage often caused by diabetes, and eliminate many of the complications you may already experience. You may find you can even eliminate your medications.

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