Individual results may vary.
Exercise is one of the top 3 ways for controlling blood sugar, along with following
a healthy diabetes meal plan and taking medicine as part of your treatment plan.
Exercise is especially important for people with diabetes. Learn more about the
Before you start
Talk to your doctor before you start an exercise program. Your doctor can help you
decide what kind of physical activities are right for you. You'll also want to have
a discussion about the diabetes medicines you take, both prescription and over-the-counter.
You may need to change the amount you take before you exercise.
Ideas for exercise when you have diabetes
- Extra daily activity. Chores like walking the dog, cleaning the house, and
washing the car are activities you can use to boost your activity level. The idea
is to lengthen some of your daily tasks in order to be active longer. You can also
replace some daily activities with others. For instance, instead of taking a coffee
break or having a snack, you could go for a walk
- Aerobic exercise. This type of activity means raising your heart rate and
probably breaking a sweat. With aerobic exercise, you use the large muscles in your
body, such as the ones in your legs. This could include brisk walking or hiking,
cycling, basketball or other sports, dancing, or taking an aerobics class at the
- Strength training. Lifting weights or working with resistance can help you
build muscle. This type of exercise can help you burn calories more easily, since
muscle burns more calories than fat. With larger, stronger muscles, you may find
that you have better coordination and balance
- Stretching. Simple stretches like touching your toes or sitting cross-legged
can make your muscles more flexible. It can also help your muscles feel less sore
after exercise or a long, active day
How you choose to exercise is less important than finding a way to stay active regularly.
Learn more about
being active as a part of your life on Cornerstones4Care.com.
Exercise and low blood glucose
It is possible that exercise can cause low blood sugar, also called
hypoglycemia. You may have to lower your dose of medicine to avoid low
blood sugar while exercising. It may also be a good idea to bring a snack or glucose
tablets in case your blood sugar gets too low while you are exercising. After exercising,
check to see how it affected your blood sugar level. As always, speak to your doctor
if you are concerned about low blood sugar. Learn more about the
signs and symptoms of hypoglycemia by visiting Cornerstones4Care.com.