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Exercise & Insulin Therapy: What You Should Know

Exercise & Insulin Therapy: What You Should Know

Do you make enough time for exercise? Regular exercise is a key component of a healthy treatment plan for those living with type 1 diabetes. Keeping fit helps to stabilize blood glucose levels and boosts your health in the long run. According to studies from the Diabetes Research and Clinical Practice, regular physical exercise benefits diabetics in all age groups. In fact, exercise can improve both physical and mental development and maintain control in type 1 diabetes. However, extra precautions must be taken when insulin is involved.

Exercise during insulin therapy requires both practice and constant adjustments. This will help you avoid the sudden swings of blood glucose during your workout. While the most typical diet and exercise programs might be intimidating for many, the benefits far outweigh the risks of living a sedentary lifestyle. Here, we will discuss what you should know about exercise and insulin therapy.

Adjust Insulin Therapy BEFORE You Exercise

Intense physical activity can lower your blood glucose levels while you exercise, which is why you need to plan ahead of time. Start by determining where your current insulin levels are and how much is in your system from the last injected dosage. If you have insulin on board, you will need to eat the right amount of carbs to prevent hypoglycemia, the sudden drop in glucose during your workout.

Track Your Progress

One of the best tips for exercising with Diabetes is to change poor habits one step at a time. When you change all your daily habits, this can lead to stress and affect your body in the long run. The key to success is to go easy on yourself and watch your progress.

Choose a physical activity with both cardio and resistance. Don’t forget to check how your glucose levels respond before, during, and after you exercise. You can monitor glucose levels about three hours post-workout, to see how your body has been affected.

Evaluate the Results

Take time to understand where blood glucose levels are during each session. Make note of what you feel and how your body responds to exercise. This will help you adjust your insulin before your next activity.

Exercise is great for our health and can maintain stability in glucose levels. Remember to check with your physician before you decide to exercise after living a sedentary lifestyle. If you plan to work out for long periods of time, be sure to check your blood glucose every hour. While it does require more prep work, you will slowly begin to feel more confident in your routine.

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About the author

Matt Schmidt

Matt’s father was diagnosed with diabetes in 2010 and since then has been determined to help educate others about diabetes. Matt currently lives in Pittsburg, PA with his wife and two children.

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