Physical activity is one of the most important things you can do to live well with your diabetes. However, being active is not just about losing weight or running a marathon or spending hours in a gym in fact it’s an excellent way to stay fit and is an integral part of living a healthy lifestyle. Exercise, or physical activity, includes anything that gets you moving such as walking, swimming, dancing or gardening.
Regular Activity is important for everyone but is a key factor of managing diabetes and lower the risk of its complications along with proper meal planning, taking medications as prescribed, and stress management.
Health Benefits of Regular Physical Activity
When you are physically active, your muscles use up glucose as a source of energy and your cells become more sensitive to insulin so it can work more efficiently. This helps glucose from building up in your blood. So, exercising consistently can lower blood glucose and improve your A1C and reduce the need of your diabetes pills or insulin. Physical activity is also important for your wellbeing, and can help with many other health conditions like:
- Lowers your risk for pre-diabetes, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and stroke
- Burns calories and help you to lose or maintain weight
- Strengthens your heart and lowers blood pressure and cholesterol
- Improves your blood circulation especially in peripheral areas like arms and feet
- Strengthens and tone your muscles and reduce aches and pains
- Helps to preserve bone mass and keeps your joints flexible
- Improves your posture and a balance to prevent falls
- Helps to improve quality of sleep and energy levels
- Reduces stress and improves overall quality of life
However, getting Started and staying motivated to exercise program can seem challenging, especially when you are getting back into a workout routine or starting exercise for the first time. Everyone’s physical abilities and schedules are different; choose the best ways to fit physical activity into your daily life—whether it’s walking to work, doing chair exercises or working out at the gym.
Once you get that momentum going, you’ll feel better, have more energy, and more likely to stick with it and can reap tons of health benefits.