What You Need to Know About Exercise and Diabetes
Exercise is a great way to maintain a healthy body weight, and it can also serve as a safe way to manage diabetes symptoms.
Exercise is an important fitness tool that can help lower blood sugar levels, improve the body's use of insulin, burn excess body fat, improve muscle strength, lower blood pressure, protect against heart and blood vessel disease by lowering “bad” LDL cholesterol, improve blood circulation, reduce risk of heart disease, and even reduce stress. Experts suggest 150 minutes a week of moderately intense physical activities such as brisk walking, swimming laps or bicycling.
Monitor Your Blood Sugar Levels
One of the most important things to do before you exercise is check your blood sugar. If you're going to exercise for more than an hour, check your blood sugar at regular intervals during your workout. You should also check it after you finish exercising as hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) can occur up to five hours after exercising.
Blood Sugar Guidelines for Exercising Safely
If your blood sugar levels are lower than 100 mg/dL, your levels may be too low to exercise safely. If this is the case, you should eat a small snack that contains carbohydrates, like fruit or crackers, before you begin to work out.
When your blood sugar levels are between 100 and 250 mg/dL you are good to go, as this is considered to be a safe pre-exercise blood sugar range.
If your blood sugar levels are 250 mg/dL or higher, you should take some precautions before working out. One thing you should check for are ketones in your urine, which are substances made when your body break