Diabetes and Exercise, How to Control Blood Glucose Levels
Within the past 35 years, we have seen the country go from having 1 in 4 Americans being overweight or obese in 1980 to an increase of 1 in 3 by 2004. This means that the majority of Americans are overweight or obese. This increase has also seen a rise in the number of diseases associated with being overweight. Belly fat appears to be a major culprit in insulin-resistance, often associated with type 2 diabetes. Studies are determining that it is not only crucial to diminish body fat but that much of the fat is in the dangerous mid-section.
Type 2 diabetes is the most prevalent form of diabetes in the world – while also being the one we have the most chance of avoiding or controlling through proper diet and exercise. According to a clinical study by the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), people already diagnosed with pre-diabetes can reduce their risk of developing type 2 diabetes if they simply lose 5% to 7% of their body weight and exercise regularly. Simply getting exercise and losing weight, even small amounts of weight, can dramatically decrease the risk of getting diabetes even among those who are most at risk of getting the illness.
Exercise can also help control diabetes among those who already have it. Exercise has been called the “invisible insulin” because it contributes to increasing insulin-sensitivity among the cells, thereby causing them to increase their uptake of blood glucose. Exercise improves the body’s use of insulin, meaning that we can become less dependent on medications or injections if we have diabetes and it can also help prevent diabetes entirely among those who are more at risk.
Exercising causes the body to need extra energy to burn for fuel, which comes from the glucose in our bloodstream. With short bursts of exercise, the muscles and the liver will release stored glucose for fuel. When we have longer amounts of regular, sustained exercise, muscles take up glucose at almost 20 times the normal rate. This causes blood sugar levels to drop. This is also how we are most likely to lose weight and burn excess fat, lowering our risk of developing diabetes in the first place.
Regular exercise is also necessary to help us burn fat, increase muscle and improve cardiovascular health. It energizes us and gives us the stamina needed to carry out daily functions. It has also been shown to naturally help us increase human growth hormone (HGH) production as it stimulates the pituitary gland. Low-impact exercises work well for those who cannot manage more strenuous workouts, such as for those who have weakened or painful joints. It’s OK to start slow and gradually build to a longer workout of 30-60 minutes. Even small changes such as taking the stairs at the office or mall can help burn calories and improve our overall physical health. If you work in an office building, try getting off the elevator one or two floors before your own and climb the stairs the remaining way. Walk around on your breaks rather than sit at your desk or in the break room. Small lifestyle changes can help bring about big results.
With all of the benefits of getting regular exercise, it is imperative that we accept the reality that we must engage in more physical activity. Exercise is the key to not being another grim statistic.
To learn more about the Amino Diet Diabetic Program, call toll free 800-980-7208.
Authored by Dr. Humble Finsand