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How Much Blood Sugar Drops After Exercise

The Step-by-step Approach To Better Blood Sugars: Walking

The Step-by-step Approach To Better Blood Sugars: Walking

If you’re like me, you might have a health-focused New Year’s resolution posted on your wall: "lose weight," "exercise more, "be less stressed." Unfortunately, making resolutions is easy, but sticking to them is hard. A 15,000-person survey found that four out of five people who make New Year’s resolutions eventually break them. And it gets worse: a sizeable percentage of people (11%) in one survey actually broke their resolution one week in! As I pondered this depressing data, I thought about scientifically testing the simplest, most fundamental exercise possible: walking. It can be done anywhere, does not cost anything, and requires no equipment. And because the barriers to doing it are so low, it also helps address that very basic New Year’s Resolution conundrum outlined above. What follows is my personal diabetes experience testing the blood sugar benefits of walking, a brief review of studies on diabetes and walking, and five tips to incorporate walking into your daily routine. If you find this article useful, check out my upcoming book, Bright Spots & Landmines! Walking with diabetes – my own experience As a fitness fiend my whole life, I tend to think of “exercise” with a very intense, all-or-nothing frame of reference: cycling, strength training, and playing basketball. So when I approached the question of how much walking could really drop my blood sugars, I was skeptical. In an effort to test it objectively, I performed a dozen periods of walking, and measured my blood glucose immediately before and immediately after finishing. I timed each walk with a stopwatch, always made sure I had less than one unit of insulin-on-board, and tried to go at a normal speed. On average, walking dropped my blood sugar by approximately one mg/dl per minute. The la Continue reading >>

Diabetes And Exercise: When To Monitor Your Blood Sugar

Diabetes And Exercise: When To Monitor Your Blood Sugar

Exercise is an important part of any diabetes treatment plan. To avoid potential problems, check your blood sugar before, during and after exercise. Diabetes and exercise go hand in hand, at least when it comes to managing your diabetes. Exercise can help you improve your blood sugar control, boost your overall fitness, and reduce your risk of heart disease and stroke. But diabetes and exercise pose unique challenges, too. To exercise safely, it's crucial to track your blood sugar before, during and after physical activity. You'll learn how your body responds to exercise, which can help you prevent potentially dangerous blood sugar fluctuations. Before exercise: Check your blood sugar before your workout Before jumping into a fitness program, get your doctor's OK to exercise — especially if you've been inactive. Talk to your doctor about any activities you're contemplating, the best time to exercise and the potential impact of medications on your blood sugar as you become more active. For the best health benefits, experts recommend at least 150 minutes a week of moderately intense physical activities such as: Fast walking Lap swimming Bicycling If you're taking insulin or medications that can cause low blood sugar (hypoglycemia), test your blood sugar 30 minutes before exercising. Consider these general guidelines relative to your blood sugar level — measured in milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL) or millimoles per liter (mmol/L). Lower than 100 mg/dL (5.6 mmol/L). Your blood sugar may be too low to exercise safely. Eat a small snack containing 15 to 30 grams of carbohydrates, such as fruit juice, fruit, crackers or even glucose tablets before you begin your workout. 100 to 250 mg/dL (5.6 to 13.9 mmol/L). You're good to go. For most people, this is a safe pre-exercise Continue reading >>

Hypoglycaemia (low Blood Glucose) In Non-diabetic People

Hypoglycaemia (low Blood Glucose) In Non-diabetic People

What is hypoglycaemia (low blood glucose)? Hypoglycaemia or low blood glucose is a condition in which the level of glucose (sugar) in the blood, drops below a certain point (about 2.5mmol/l). The condition manifests itself by a number of symptoms that usually disappear 10 to 15 minutes after eating sugar. People differ slightly in the exact level of blood glucose at which they begin to feel symptoms of low blood sugar. Insulin is normally produced in the pancreas and helps the cells in the body absorb glucose from the blood. Normally, the glucose level rises after a meal. Too much insulin in the blood and other diseases can cause hypoglycaemic episodes (also known as 'hypos'). What can cause hypoglycaemic episodes in non-diabetic patients? Too much insulin in the blood: reactive hypoglycaemia (see below) a tumour – very often benign – in the insulin-producing pancreas. This is a very rare condition indeed Other diseases: a disease in the adrenal glands (Addison's disease) a weakened pituitary gland a severe reduction in liver function patients who have had their stomach removed fasting, malnutrition Reactive hypoglycaemia is possibly the most common reason for hypoglycaemia in non-diabetics but is often overdiagnosed. This form of hypoglycaemia is probably caused by an overproduction of insulin from the pancreas after a large meal with a lot of carbohydrates. The insulin can still be detected even after several hours, although the level should be back to normal at this time. This condition is probably most common in overweight people and those with Type 2 diabetes, where the large demand for insulin can sometimes cause too much insulin to be produced in the pancreas. There is some evidence to suggest that reactive hypoglycaemia can precede Type 2 diabetes. What happ Continue reading >>

High Blood Sugar After Exercise?

High Blood Sugar After Exercise?

back to Overview Markus, one of our great German-language authors, wrote about struggling with high blood sugar after exercise. I know it's a common problem, and one I've struggled with personally, so I want to make sure you get to see it, too. From Markus Berndt: It’s one of the first recommendations you get after being diagnosed with diabetes. “Get active, do more exercise, it’s good for you!” And since we’ve been a child we’ve heard that exercise is healthy. If we do it consistently we’re rewarded, literally, with an awesome beach body. Adding exercise into our day is also good for our diabetes. We’re taught that exercise lowers blood sugar, right? But can the opposite also be true? Can you have high blood sugar after exercise? Up close We now know that physical activity usually lowers blood sugar because it reduces how much insulin is needed to move sugar into the cells. While, in the past, most experts advised frequent training intervals at moderate intensity, but recent studies have shown that even short, intense workouts are very effective. For example, a 15-minute intense weight training lowered blood sugar even more than what’s seen in some endurance training. So activity lowers blood sugar – but not always! Personally, I experienced this very early on and was extremely irritated! I just learned that exercise lowers blood sugar, but an intense 45-minute run consistently resulted in higher blood sugars than when I started! What in the world? At first, I was confused and felt like I didn’t understand the world anymore. Then it was more of a “would you look at this?” kind of thing. And finally, I was determined to figure out what was happening. I knew there had to be an explanation. Why does exercise sometimes raise blood sugar? Exercise Continue reading >>

Exercises To Lower Your Blood Sugar

Exercises To Lower Your Blood Sugar

It’s never too late to reap the benefits of exercise, whether you’re 45 or 95. First of all, it simply makes you feel good to move. By becoming more active, you can also lower your blood sugar to keep diabetes under control. “You don’t need to run a marathon to get results,” says Dawn Sherr, RD, of the American Association of Diabetes Educators. “Walking, swimming, and playing with the grandkids are all great ways to get exercise.” Follow these four steps to get started. If you're just starting, ask your doctor which exercise is right for you. Ask if you need to adjust your diabetes medicine before you hit the trail or the pool. Next, think about what you'll enjoy most. You’re more likely to stick with activities you like. Here are a few suggestions: Walk outdoors or indoors on a track or in a mall Take a dance class Bicycle outdoors or ride a stationary bike indoors Swim or try water aerobics Stretch Try yoga or tai chi Play tennis Take aerobics or another fitness class Do housework, yard chores, or gardening Try resistance training with light weights or elastic bands If more than one of these appeals to you, go for them! In fact, combining cardio, like walking or swimming, with stretching or balance moves gives you a better workout. Any way you move will help lower your blood sugar. When you do moderate exercise, like walking, that makes your heart beat a little faster and breathe a little harder. Your muscles use more glucose, the sugar in your blood stream. Over time, this can lower your blood sugar levels. It also makes the insulin in your body work better. You'll get these benefits for hours after your walk or workout. Just remember you don’t have to overdo it. Strenuous exercise can sometimes increase blood sugar temporarily after you stop exerc Continue reading >>

How To Best Manage And Prevent Exercise Low Blood Sugars

How To Best Manage And Prevent Exercise Low Blood Sugars

If you take insulin or another blood glucose-lowering medication, you are at risk for low blood sugar (usually defined as blood glucose < 65 mg/dl), or hypoglycemia, which can occur during or following physical activity. Low blood sugar can cause trembling, sweating, dizziness, blurred vision, impaired thinking, and even seizures and loss of consciousness. Exercise presents its own special challenges for managing blood sugar. Since any activity increases your body’s use of blood sugar, hypoglycemia can develop more easily. The more you understand about what makes your blood sugars go down (or sometimes up) during exercise, the easier it becomes to control and the more confident you can be about doing activities and staying in control of your diabetes. Much of your blood sugar response has to do with how much insulin is in your bloodstream. If your insulin levels are high during a physical activity, your muscles will take up more blood glucose (since muscle contractions themselves stimulate glucose uptake without insulin) and you’re more likely to end up with low blood sugars. You can even end up with late-onset hypoglycemia, which can occur from right after to up to 48 hours after you exercise. What’s important is to do your best to prevent lows before, during and after exercise by taking the steps listed below. Prevent Lows Before, During and After Exercise Learn how your body responds to exercise by checking your blood sugar levels before, (occasionally) during, and after exercise. If your blood sugar is near or below 70 mg/dl before you exercise, bring it back within normal range before you begin by consuming some carbohydrates. Always be prepared to correct a low by carrying a rapid-acting carbohydrate with you during exercise. Don’t assume you’ll be able Continue reading >>

Common Questions About Blood Sugar

Common Questions About Blood Sugar

How often should I test my blood sugar? This is a very common question, and the answer isn't the same for everyone. In general, you should test as often as you need to get helpful information. There's no point in testing if the information you get doesn't help you manage your diabetes. If you've been told to test at certain times, but you don't know why or what to do with the test results, then testing won't seem very meaningful. Here are some general guidelines for deciding how often to test: If you can only test once a day, then do it before breakfast. Keep a written record so that you can see the pattern of the numbers. If you control your blood sugar by diet and exercise only, this once-a-day test might be enough. If you take medicine (diabetes pills or insulin), you will probably want to know how well that medicine is working. The general rule is to test before meals and keep a record. If you want to know how your meals affect your blood sugar, testing about 2 hours after eating can be helpful. Test whenever you feel your blood sugar is either too high or too low. Testing will give you important information about what you need to do to raise or lower your blood sugar. If you take more than 2 insulin shots a day or use an insulin pump, you should test 4 to 6 times a day. You should test more often if you're having unusually high or low readings, if you're sick, under more stress than usual, or are pregnant. If you change your schedule or travel, you should also test your blood sugar more often than usual. Talk to a member of your health care team about how often to test based on your personal care plan. What should my test numbers be? There isn't one blood sugar target that's right for everyone with diabetes. It's important to work with your health care team to set Continue reading >>

Exercise For Diabetes Control

Exercise For Diabetes Control

By the dLife Editors In case you haven’t heard: Exercise is really good for people with type 2 diabetes. It helps control blood sugar levels, increases energy levels, improves heart health, and promotes emotional well-being. Barring other medical complications, the majority of people with diabetes can and should exercise for diabetes control and for better overall health and well-being. How does exercise lower blood sugar? Exercise lowers blood sugar in two ways: First, exercise increases insulin sensitivity. This means that your cells are better able to use available insulin to absorb sugar from the bloodstream to be used as energy for your body. Second, exercise stimulates another mechanism that allows your muscles to absorb and use sugar for energy, even without insulin. Not only does exercise lower blood sugar levels in the short term, but exercising over time also contributes to lower A1C levels over time. How important is exercise? Leading a sedentary (or inactive) lifestyle is one of the major risk factors for developing type 2 diabetes, and the high incidence of obesity and overweight among people with type 2 is also highly correlated with inactivity. Starting a workout program can lower body mass and consequently decrease the insulin resistance of type 2 diabetes; studies have shown that people with type 2 diabetes who exercise regularly have better A1c profiles than those who don’t. Along with medical nutrition therapy, exercise is one of the first lines of defense in type 2 diabetes control. In addition, exercise is a key tool in preventing one of the leading complications of type 2 diabetes—cardiovascular disease. Studies have shown that regular activity lowers triglyceride levels and blood pressure. How much exercise do you need? The American Diabetes Continue reading >>

The Impact Of Brief High-intensity Exercise On Blood Glucose Levels

The Impact Of Brief High-intensity Exercise On Blood Glucose Levels

Go to: Abstract Moderate-intensity exercise improves blood glucose (BG), but most people fail to achieve the required exercise volume. High-intensity exercise (HIE) protocols vary. Maximal cycle ergometer sprint interval training typically requires only 2.5 minutes of HIE and a total training time commitment (including rest and warm up) of 25 minutes per session. The effect of brief high-intensity exercise on blood glucose levels of people with and without diabetes is reviewed. Results Six studies of nondiabetics (51 males, 14 females) requiring 7.5 to 20 minutes/week of HIE are reviewed. Two weeks of sprint interval training increased insulin sensitivity up to 3 days postintervention. Twelve weeks near maximal interval running (total exercise time 40 minutes/week) improved BG to a similar extent as running at 65% VO2max for 150 minutes/week. Eight studies of diabetics (41 type 1 and 22 type 2 subjects) were reviewed. Six were of a single exercise session with 44 seconds to 13 minutes of HIE, and the others were 2 and 7 weeks duration with 20 and 2 minutes/week HIE, respectively. With type 1 and 2 diabetes, BG was generally higher during and up to 2 hours after HIE compared to controls. With type 1 diabetics, BG decreased from midnight to 6 AM following HIE the previous morning. With type 2 diabetes, a single session improved postprandial BG for 24 hours, while a 2-week program reduced the average BG by 13% at 48 to 72 hours after exercise and also increased GLUT4 by 369%. Conclusion Very brief HIE improves BG 1 to 3 days postexercise in both diabetics and non-diabetics. HIE is unlikely to cause hypoglycemia during and immediately after exercise. Larger and longer randomized studies are needed to determine the safety, acceptability, long-term efficacy, and optimal exerc Continue reading >>

Type 2 Diabetes Exercise – Does It Really Work ?

Type 2 Diabetes Exercise – Does It Really Work ?

Fix Your Lifestyle, Fix T2D Type 2 diabetes has always been recognized as a “lifestyle” disease. This means that although you may or may not have the genes that dispose you to becoming diabetic, whether you actually become diabetic and if you do, whether you’re able to reverse diabetes (yeah, you heard right. We said “Reverse it!”). type 2 diabetes exercise is strongly linked to lifestyle choices you make, especially diet and physical activities. When we say lifestyle, we include diet in it. So the key components, each supported by research studies that have shown measurable results on reduction of diabetes include: Eating right; low on carbs, moderate proteins, high on good fats Fasting right; giving you body the break it needs between meals Reducing stress levels; so your body is not craving sugars to combat stress Using your medicines and dietary supplements wisely to reduce insulin resistance. Losing weight, the healthy way Exercising correctly; picking and sticking to an exercise routine that suits you. This last point is exactly what the rest of this piece is about. At sepalika.com, we go the extra mile to make sure that the information that we share is reliable; that it has research studies to back it up. Please click on “References” at the end of the article to see the research studies that have contributed to the creation of this article. Benefits Of Exercise for Diabetics Exercise is known to have many benefits. Lowers blood pressure. Lowers unhealthy cholesterol. Improves circulation. Supports healthy weight. Makes your muscles and bones stronger. Increases energy levels. Improves posture, balance and independent living. Helps you sleep better. Aids stress management. Improves sense of overall well being. Makes it easier to control your blood gl Continue reading >>

High And Low Blood Sugar Issues

High And Low Blood Sugar Issues

Blood sugar concentrations or blood glucose levels are the amount of sugar or glucose present in your blood stream. Your body naturally regulates blood sugar (glucose) levels as a part your body”s metabolic processes. Glucose or sugar is the primary energy mechanism for cells and blood lipids. Glucose or blood sugar is transported from your intestines or liver to the cells in your body via the bloodstream. The absorption of glucose is promoted by insulin or the hormone produced in the pancreas. If your sugar levels are not balanced you may have high or low blood sugar issues. Low sugar issues are hypoglycemia and high blood sugar indicates that you have hyperglycemia or hyperglycemia symptoms. High or low blood sugar levels cause different problems. Low blood sugar levels can cause dementia, comas or death. High blood sugar is a major cause of damage to your body”s internal organs. Low Blood Sugar Low blood sugar or hypoglycemia indicates the level of glucose in your blood has dramatically dropped below what your body need to function. When your blood sugar drops below 70 milligrams per deciliter symptom will develop. You may feel tired and anxious or weak and shaky. Your heart rate may be rapid and you feel as if you are having a heart attack. Eating something sugary will bring your sugar levels back to normal almost immediately and symptoms will subside. Sugar levels that are below 40 mg/dL cause you to have behavior changes. You may feel very irritable and become weak and confused. You may not realize you need to eat to raise your blood sugar levels. Blood sugar levels below 20 mg/dL will most certainly cause a loss of consciousness or perhaps you will experience seizures. You will need medical care immediately. Hypoglycemia symptoms happen very quickly. If you a Continue reading >>

Low Blood Sugar (hypoglycemia)

Low Blood Sugar (hypoglycemia)

Low blood sugar, also known as hypoglycemia, can be a dangerous condition. Low blood sugar can happen in people with diabetes who take medicines that increase insulin levels in the body. Taking too much medication, skipping meals, eating less than normal, or exercising more than usual can lead to low blood sugar for these individuals. Blood sugar is also known as glucose. Glucose comes from food and serves as an important energy source for the body. Carbohydrates — foods such as rice, potatoes, bread, tortillas, cereal, fruit, vegetables, and milk — are the body’s main source of glucose. After you eat, glucose is absorbed into your bloodstream, where it travels to your body’s cells. A hormone called insulin, which is made in the pancreas, helps your cells use glucose for energy. If you eat more glucose than you need, your body will store it in your liver and muscles or change it into fat so it can be used for energy when it’s needed later. Without enough glucose, your body cannot perform its normal functions. In the short term, people who aren’t on medications that increase insulin have enough glucose to maintain blood sugar levels, and the liver can make glucose if needed. However, for those on these specific medications, a short-term reduction in blood sugar can cause a lot of problems. Your blood sugar is considered low when it drops below 70 mg/dL. Immediate treatment for low blood sugar levels is important to prevent more serious symptoms from developing. Explaining low blood sugar in layman's terms » Symptoms of low blood sugar can occur suddenly. They include: rapid heartbeat sudden nervousness headache hunger shaking sweating People with hypoglycemic unawareness do not know their blood sugar is dropping. If you have this condition, your blood sugar Continue reading >>

Get In The Zone: My Tips For Avoiding Hypoglycemia During Exercise

Get In The Zone: My Tips For Avoiding Hypoglycemia During Exercise

Twitter summary: Diagnosing & solving hypoglycemia (lows) & hyperglycemia (highs) during exercise w/ #diabetes. It’s all about personal experimentation. Exercise has been one of four complete gamechangers for managing my type 1 diabetes, but it can frequently be a source of confusion, frustration, exhaustion, and blood sugar unpredictability. I think this is partially why I get so many reader questions on this topic – managing blood sugars during exercise is challenging. Fortunately, it’s not impossible! This article shares what I’ve learned from athletes, healthcare providers, and 14 years of experimenting with blood sugars during exercise. I strongly believe that anyone with diabetes can master exercise, and it all starts with becoming a good driver – maintaining the right speed (100-180 mg/dl) while applying the proper amount of gas and brake (food and insulin) at the right times. The big challenge is that universal driving recommendations aren’t possible, since everyone’s car model (i.e., body), car engine (i.e., diabetes, physiology), and road conditions (type of exercise) are different. The key is not to give up, as it can take a while to climb the learning curve and figure out what works for you. This article offers a toolkit to help you on that path. Part I shares a diagnostic checklist, followed by some potential tactics to avoid lows and highs (Part II). Part III shares what I specifically do, in case it’s useful. I’m a pretty active person (much of my exercise is vigorous) and have figured out what works for me over time, so your adjustments could (and probably will) differ dramatically. You should absolutely talk to your healthcare provider before making any changes to your medications or routine. If you find this article useful, check out Continue reading >>

Low Blood Sugar Levels During Exercise: Is Non-diabetic Hypoglycemia Threatening?

Low Blood Sugar Levels During Exercise: Is Non-diabetic Hypoglycemia Threatening?

Hypoglycemia is the term used for defining low blood sugar levels, and when we’re talking about non-diabetic hypoglycemia, we refer to below normal values of blood sugar that occur in people who aren’t affected by diabetes. The symptoms of hypoglycemia can vary from one person to another, and can be accentuated by certain factors such as the lack of sleep, fasting or dehydration. Triggers of hypoglycemia in non-diabetic people can be very different, but today we’ll only discuss about exercise-induced low blood sugar levels, and we’ll try to understand why this symptom occurs, how threatening it is and how it can be prevented and managed. Exercise can decrease one’s blood sugar levels, but in healthy people the hypoglycemic episode is only temporary. If you constantly experience low blood sugar levels after or during exercise, it may be wise to schedule an appointment with your doctor and get tested for diabetes. Problems with the adrenal and pituitary glands, as well as liver problems, may also trigger hypoglycemic episodes, so it’s important to exclude any potential health issue from the list. Back to exercise-induced hypoglycemia: you probably experienced it several times after strenuous exercise, so the symptoms may sound very familiar. Hypoglycemia manifests through dizziness, headaches, inability to focus, shaking, sweating, blurred vision, irregular heartbeats, and even loss of coordination, anxiety and seizures if you don’t restore the glycogen reservoirs fast after the first symptoms occur. Why do these manifestations appear when exercising? Your body relies on glucose as its main fuel, so this form of sugar is the first one used by the organism for producing energy during exercise. The muscles and brain require glucose to function properly, and gl Continue reading >>

Short Stroll After Meals Better For Blood Sugar Than Walks At Other Times

Short Stroll After Meals Better For Blood Sugar Than Walks At Other Times

A 10-minute walk immediately after each meal is far more effective than exercise at other times at reducing blood sugar levels, research suggests. The study of patients with diabetes found that the timing of exercise made a critical difference to controlling levels of glucose in the blood. Experts said diabetics should consider a walk after each meal – especially after eating meals heavy in carbohydrates, such as bread and pasta. Separate research published alongside it found that exercising for just 20 minutes a day could cut the chance of diabetes by more than one quarter. 'Current guidelines should be amended to specify post-meal activity, particularly when meals contain a substantial amount of carbohydrate'Professor Jim Mann, University of Otago In the first study, undertaken by the University of Otago in New Zealand, adults with diabetes were asked to walk for half an hour a day – or to take three 10-minute walks within five minutes of finishing their meals. Those who took short bursts of exercise after eating saw blood sugar levels drop by 12 per cent more than those who walked at other times. Control of blood sugar is crucial to reducing the risk of heart disease, and of complications linked to diabetes. The study found that those who walked immediately after their meals saw blood sugar levels drop by 12 per cent more than those who exercised at other times. Much of the difference occurred after the last meal of the day, when there was a 22 per cent drop in sugar levels among those who had a 10 minute walk. Lead researcher Professor Jim Mann said: "The improvement in overall postprandial glycaemia was largely accounted for by lower blood glucose levels after the evening meal, when carbohydrate consumption was high and participants tended to be more sedentary. Continue reading >>

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