Exercise with Diabetes.

Exercise with diabetes.


Before participating in sport or exercise, diabetics should make sure their doctors aware of their intentions.

Whatever your age, the less time you are sedentary the better.


Being active will help you lose weight or maintain a healthy weight.

Increase the amount of glucose used by the muscles for energy, so it may sometimes lower blood glucose levels. Help the body to use insulin more efficiently as regular physical activity can help reduce the amount of insulin you have to take. Muscle movement leads to greater sugar uptake by muscle cells and lower blood sugar levels. Frequent and regular exercise is recommended for people of all ages as it boosts the immune system and helps protect against conditions such as Heart disease, Strokes, Cancer and Type 2 diabetes. Exercising on a daily basis can also have numerous health benefits such as it improves mental health, boosts self- confidence and self-esteem, it can enhance sleep quality and energy levels and can cut stress levels and depression.

In the UK, the NHS recommends completing 150 minutes of moderate intensity aerobic activity a week. Fast paced walking, light jogging, bike riding, playing tennis or badminton all count.


There are some precautions people with diabetes should take when exercising. Hypoglycemia can occur if a person who is taking blood sugar lowering medication has: eaten too little carbohydrate such as fruit, milk, starch relative to the exercise.

Taken too much medication relative to the exercise.

Combined effect if food and medication imbalances relative to the exercise.

Those who do not take diabetes medication do not need to take these precautions. Drink plenty of water before, during and after exercise to stay well-hydrated.


Worsening foot problems.

As most exercise is done while standing up, it is important to ensure that you are wearing adequate footwear and correct socks.

Foot problems can occur when shoes fit poorly.

Socks are not worn or are not designed for sports such as not being absorbent.

Friction or pressure points develop on feet.

In order to prevent foot problems, you should,

Buy shoes that are well-made for the type of exercise you do and that they fit properly.

Buy cotton, absorbent socks.

Inspect feet daily for signs of friction or sores.

Speak with a podiatrist about proper foot care procedures.


Diabetes UK website has plenty of useful advice on exercising, eating a well-balanced diet, recipes, how to manage your diabetes and much much more.

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