In 2014, more than 422 million people were diagnosed with diabetes, according to a WHO report.
Diabetes is a group of conditions that impair the body’s glucose consumption. Glucose, sometimes known as “sugar,” is the body’s primary source of energy. Our main supply of glucose is the food we eat, which is broken down and circulated in the bloodstream as sugars.
To maintain blood glucose levels, the pancreas secretes a hormone known as Insulin. This insulin aids in the reduction of blood glucose levels by encouraging various cells to absorb the glucose, thus maintaining blood glucose levels. When you suffer from diabetes, the hormone insulin is either not formed or the cells are unable to use it.
Diabetes management is a huge task in itself, and it can be challenging at times. The following article discusses the role of physical activity in diabetes management to help you in your journey to managing diabetes successfully.
1. Is Physical Activity Good for Diabetes?
It is a well-known fact that staying active is the key to a healthy lifestyle. It’s challenging enough to live with diabetes on its own, but when you add in a hectic lifestyle, it’s much more difficult to find the time to exercise. According to a study by American Diabetes Association, doing some physical activities for diabetes management every day has shown incredible results. Staying active not only keeps your blood sugar in check but also has numerous other benefits like:
- Helps you to get sound sleep
- Reduces the risk of cardiac disorders
- Reduces stress levels
- Helps in keeping a check on your weight.
- Increase the sensitivity of cells towards insulin
2. How do Exercises Help in Controlling Diabetes?
You might be wondering how exercise helps to reduce blood glucose levels? As mentioned previously, glucose is our body’s primary source of energy. When the body is put under stress, such as when you begin working out, the body begins to use the energy it has stored, and the cell demands more and more glucose. As a result, glucose moves into the cells and is used up rather than circulating through the bloodstream.
According to research by Harvard Medical Association, regular exercise reduces HbA1c levels in people with diabetes by 0.7 percent. The HbA1c level in the blood is a common test for the diagnosis of diabetes. HbA1c is a test that measures your blood glucose levels over a period of 2-3 months. A low HbA1c level indicates a low blood sugar level.
There are some crucial points to keep in mind before you start any physical activity for diabetes:
- Monitor your blood glucose level constantly before and after the workout to avoid hypoglycemia ( when blood sugar levels go very low).
- The best time to work out is around 2 to 3 hours after you eat because that’s when the glucose levels are highest.
- Before beginning any program, consult with a diabetic expert.
Any form of exercise, such as aerobics, yoga, Zumba, resistance training, or even walking, is quite beneficial in the management of diabetes.
3. Physical Activities for Type 1 Diabetes.
Type 1 diabetes also known as Juvenile diabetes is seen when the body doesn’t produce enough insulin. This is due to an autoimmune disease that damages the beta cells in the pancreas thereby hampering insulin production. Generally present from birth, and diagnosed in children and young adults, making diabetes management a crucial part of life There is a plethora of physical activity for diabetes type one that can help in diabetes management.
- Workouts like sprinting, skipping rope, etc are particularly beneficial since they push the body to use just glucose as a source of energy for the muscles.
- High-intensity interval training is the exercise where activities are performed intensely and alternated with resting periods that are short.
- Yoga is another choice for type 1 diabetes physical exercise. Yoga helps in reducing the blood glucose level, reduces stress, improves muscle strength and improves the balance
4. Physical Activities for Type 2 Diabetes.
Type 2 diabetes, according to the CDC, is a condition in which the insulin is being formed and secreted by the pancreas but the cells produce no response against it. It’s also known as insulin resistance, and it causes blood sugar levels to rise to extremely high levels. This affects the pancreases, causing them to produce extra insulin and eventually malfunctioning pancreatic cells. This causes prediabetes, a condition in which blood sugar levels are usually about the average level, which can progress to full-blown type 2 diabetes.
Working out and adhering to a Prediabetic physical exercise regimen is critical in delaying the occurrence of full-blown diabetes. According to a PubMed study, the patients should follow these for prediabetes and type 2 diabetes physical exercises:
- Aerobics and strength training has shown promising results in the management of diabetes, where the blood glucose level was significantly decreased.
- This can involve a wide range of exercises such as jogging, brisk walking, cycling, and even Pilates.
- Yoga is another exercise that helps you get in shape and improves your flexibility.
Doing these Physical activities for diabetes for at least 30 mins per day; 5 days a week helps in managing diabetes efficiently and keeping complications like heart diseases, kidney issues, and eye issues at bay.
Diabetes self-management might be difficult if you don’t know what to do and where to start. Dr Hemi Soneja, a diabetic specialist, can assist you in this situation. At this Clinic, you will be given an accurate diagnosis as well as a personalised treatment plan. Dr Hemi Soneja has successfully helped many patients control and treat their diabetes by using a holistic approach and a tailored diet and fitness regimen.