It’s pretty common knowledge that exercise is good for you. You’d have a hard time finding anyone to disagree with that statement, but even knowing this, many people don’t have the motivation or desire to begin exercising. It’s totally understandable that if you have a health condition, like type 2 diabetes, you may have even more hurdles to get over in order to exercise regularly. But the benefits of exercising, especially for those with health conditions, are certainly there.
While it can be harder for those who have a health condition to get out and exercise, it’s important to take a moment to consider why you should make the effort. If you’re already struggling with your health, it can be easy to just give up, but exercise could possibly be the key to not building up more health issues on top of what you’re currently dealing with. In fact, it could even improve the way you currently feel.
Exercise is known to improve and maintain health such as heart health and potentially reducing the chance of high blood pressure or heart disease. It may help with lowering your blood sugar level and help to control weight. It’s also known to help with pain by reducing inflammation and increasing your strength and endurance so that your body is performing well. There are so many other benefits to exercise for anyone, especially those with health conditions, but let’s talk about how exercise can contribute to reducing the risk of type 2 diabetes.
How does exercise help type 2 diabetes?
There are a lot of studies that show that exercise may help manage type 2 diabetes. It’s pretty well established that exercise can lower blood glucose levels and even improve insulin sensitivity. One study even showed that those who exercised for 178 to 380 minutes per week had a higher chance of discontinuing treatment with glucose-lowering medication.
While there’s no guarantee that you can discontinue your medication by adding in exercise, and as always you should talk to your health provider if you want to discuss this option, exercise certainly puts your body into a much healthier place for managing type 2 diabetes.
Best At-Home Exercises for Type 2 Diabetics
You may be thinking that you’re not in shape or that you don’t have the endurance to exercise, but don’t let that stop you. There are exercises that can be done that are very much for beginners and those who struggle with movement.
One of the most common ways to start exercising is to simply take walks. This is a great way to get started and most people can easily do this. You should aim to get at least 30 minutes in, but you can start with 5 or 10 minutes each day and slowly build up by adding a few minutes as it feels easier. Be sure to always pay attention to what your body is telling you.
It sounds like something only bodybuilders should do, but everyone can benefit from lifting weights. It’s best to start small and you don’t even need actual weights to do this. You can use bottles of water, cans of soup, etc. anything that has weight to it. When lifting weights, start small and try 5-10 reps (motions) for each exercise to start. Take a break for a day or two in between to let your muscles recover and work on different muscles those days.
If you love music, dancing can be a great way to get your heart rate up. Put together a playlist of songs that you love and plan to dance for at least 30 minutes or until you’re tired and need to take a break. Just like walking, you can work up to dancing for 30 minutes if you’re not ready for that yet. Committing to an exercise routine when you’re managing diabetes doesn’t have to be hard. You don’t have to join a gym or commit to exercising for hours at a time. Simply having the goal of moving your body every day to get your heart rate up is a great way to start.