Type 2 diabetes treatment: The activity ‘to directly decrease blood glucose’ reducing risk

Diabetes UK show how to test feet for diabetic feet sensitivity

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Type 2 diabetes is a chronic metabolic condition characterised by insulin resistance. Fluctuating blood sugar levels can have dire effects on the body but there is an exercise shown to directly target this system breakdown.

The American Diabetes Association recommends that people with type 2 diabetes start a strength training program to help with blood sugar control.

Strength training involves series of stretches or lifts, holding each stretch for a certain amount of time such as 60 seconds and then repeated for each body part you are targeting.  

This type of training is said be one of the best things you can do for your body and is a key part of any fitness plan.

Benefits of strength training for type 2 diabetes include:

  • Respond better to insulin
  • Improve the way it uses blood sugar
  • Lose weight
  • Lower your risk for heart disease.

Research in the Internal Journal of Cardiology showed that in people with type 2 diabetes, strength training can be more beneficial to blood sugar regulation than cardio.

Strength training relies primarily on the body’s glycolytic, or glucose using, metabolic system for energy.

“As we go through a strength-training workout, we use stored muscle glycogen for fuel,” explains Nick Occhipinti, an exercise physiologist.

“Once this stored muscle glycogen runs out, we start to mobilise extra glycogen from the liver and from the blood.

“This helps to directly decrease blood glucose as well as deplete stored muscle and liver glycogen stores, giving blood glucose a place to go next time we eat.”

Examples of strength training activities include:

  • Weight machines or free weights at the gym
  • Using resistance bands
  • Lifting light weights or objects like canned good or water bottles at home
  • Calisthenics or exercises that use tour own body weight to work your muscles (examples are push ups, sit ups, squats, lunges, wall-sits and planks)
  • Classes that involve strength training
  • Other activities that build and keep muscle like heavy gardening.

Diabetes is caused by blood sugar levels becoming too high, and about five million people in the UK have been diagnosed with the condition.

Around 90 percent of all diabetes cases are caused by type 2 diabetes; where the hormone insulin doesn’t work correctly, or the pancreas isn’t able to make enough of it.

Regular exercise could help to stabilise your blood sugar levels.

Keeping active is vital for diabetes patients, because it helps the body to use carbohydrates more efficiently.

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