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Diabetes

03 November 2019

Does exercise have an effect on prediabetes?

The steps that can have the most benefit in preventing diabetes are losing weight and improving your diet.

If you've been told that your blood glucose is higher than normal and that you have prediabetes, your doctor is likely to first suggest lifestyle steps to stop it from progressing to diabetes.

The steps that can have the most benefit are losing weight and improving your diet, which obviously goes hand in hand.

Regular aerobic activity

But studies also show that different types of exercise can play an important part in diabetes prevention as well, especially if you're overweight.

Research done at the University of Michigan and published in the Journal of Applied Physiology found that, for overweight people, regular aerobic activity could interrupt the changes in metabolism that set the stage for diabetes.

As you're mapping out a fitness strategy with your doctor, talk about how to incorporate both types of exercise into your life. National guidelines are to get 150 minutes per week of aerobic activity, which could be 30 minutes on each of five days or, for beginners, three chunks of 10 minutes each on five days.

Strength training could be done on the two non-aerobic activity days as long as there is a rest period of at least 48 hours between sessions to give muscles time for recovery and growth.

Image credit: iStock

 

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Diabetes expert

Dr. May currently works as a fulltime endocrinologist and has been in private practice since 2004. He has a variety of interests, predominantly obesity and diabetes, but also sees patients with osteoporosis, thyroid disorders, men's health disorders, pituitary and adrenal disorders, polycystic ovaries, and disorders of growth. He is a leading member of several obesity and diabetes societies and runs a trial centre for new drugs.

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