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What is the best exercise for blood sugar?

July 29, 2022 – This story may well be about you. how could I know?

First, a bit of an encouraging reality: According to the latest U.S. government estimates, nearly two-fifths of American adults—96 million of us—have a precursor diabetes.

As the name suggests, prediabetes is a kind of metabolic purgatory. This means that your blood sugar is chronically elevated, and if you don’t control it, you can develop type 2 diabetes.

and Type 2: About 37 million Americans suffer from it every day. This means that about 130 million people in the United States have problems dealing with glucose in their blood.

If that sounds scary, well, it is. Chances are you’ll get caught in that network because there are a lot of American adults. Fortunately, there is a proven way to avoid the whole mess.

Exercise is the easiest, cheapest and most accessible prevention/management medication you can take.

The more you exercise, the more often you exercise, the better your body can control the flow of glucose in and out of the blood.

Just four fast Simple lessons to understand

Lesson 1: Basics of blood sugar

A healthy 150-pound adult has only one teaspoon of sugar – 4 grams – swirling in their blood at any given time.

This fact is mind-boggling considering the average amount of sugar an American consumes in a day (17 teaspoons) and how important a paltry supply is to our survival (the brain accounts for 60%).

So where did all this go?

Your body uses up some energy. Your muscles and liver store some in the form of glycogen. Anything left over is converted to fat.

It works the other way around when you take a few hours of rest between meals. Your body keeps your blood levels steady by taking some glycogen out of your muscles and liver, converting it into glucose, and returning it to your bloodstream.

Meanwhile, your body primarily uses fat for fuel when you’re resting, which helps preserve stored glycogen when you really need it: during exercise.

This is why physical activity is a key factor in controlling blood sugar. Now, many people’s first question is: “What exercise should I do?” Another way to ask is: “What is the best exercise to control blood sugar?”

The quick answer is: any exercise is positive. The longer answer is: Different types of exercise can help you control your blood sugar in different ways. The different intensities within each category are the same.

We’ll dive into it. But let’s start with a simpler question: the least you can do What is the amount of exercise? Get measurable benefits?

Lesson 2: A Little Exercise Goes A Long Way

Spencer Nadolsky, DO, is a board-certified family physician who specializes in the treatment of people with obesity and type 2 diabetes. He is also a former Division 1 college heavyweight wrestler and founder of LiftRx, an online strength coaching business.

So when Nadolsky talks to his patients about exercise, you’d expect him to focus on resistance training.

Do not.

“I try to make them walk,” he said. Why walk? “It’s not overly onerous, most patients can start right away, and they can progress quickly.”

The “start now” section is critical. They do not require separate instruction, special equipment or structured training programs.

According to the American College of Sports Medicine, the benefits come right away. In its recent position paper on exercise and type 2 diabetes, it states that any type of physical activity increases glucose transport from the blood to the muscles.

Exercise also has a profound effect on how your body responds to insulin, the hormone most responsible for controlling blood sugar. Insulin sensitivity remained elevated for 72 hours after exercise.

A 2016 study found that walking 11 miles per week is enough to prevent people with prediabetes from developing full-blown type 2 diabetes. If you walk at a moderate pace (4 mph), you can cover 11 miles in less than 3 hours. That’s 30 minutes a day, 5 to 6 days a week.

While less exercise is good, more is better. A long-term study on preventing type 2 diabetes found that the more exercise participants did, the lower their risk.

But at some point, “doing more” is no longer a realistic option. Even if you can live with repetition, you’ll end up running out of hours in the day .

Fortunately, there is another option that can help you control your blood sugar in a very short period of time.

Lesson 3: Hard Work Brings Faster Results

Dr. Martin Gibala Published his first study on high-intensity interval training (HIIT) in 2005, when he was an assistant professor of exercise science at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario.

He is now chair of the department, thanks in part to the dozens of HIIT studies he has published since then. He is also the author of One Minute Workout: Science Shows a Smarter, Faster, Shorter Way to Workout .

You can find many ways to do a HIIT workout. For example, after a short warm-up, you can go all out on a stationary bike for 30 seconds, recover at a slower pace for 60 seconds, and repeat a few times. In just 10 minutes, you can get a great workout.

and you don’t even have to try . As Gibala explains in his book, Intermittent

Walking – Move faster, then slower – providing more health is more beneficial than simply striding at a normal pace.

HIIT can help you control your blood sugar in two important ways:

1. It can be significantly reduced in less time.

In a 2012 study, Gibala’s team showed that a single HIIT workout could improve postprandial blood glucose responses in people with type 2 diabetes.

The same is true over time. When analyzing hemoglobin A1c (average blood sugar levels over the past 3 months), high-intensity intervals lowered blood sugar at least as well as conventional aerobic exercise, but for a much shorter period of time.

As a bonus, HIIT may be better at reducing weight and body fat in people with type 2 diabetes.

2. HIIT uses more muscle fibers.

When you’re doing cardio at a steady pace, you’re primarily using the smaller, slow-twitch fibers. But when you go fast and hard, you’re also recruiting larger, fast-twitch fibers.

Using more total muscle mass means you use more total energy, most of which comes from glycogen muscle stored in those muscles. Your muscles then extract glucose from your blood to replace glycogen.

Over time, Gibala says, your muscles increase the amount of glycogen they retain, even though muscles don’t necessarily increase in size.

But what if you do build bigger muscles?

Lesson 4: Lifting Weights Gives You Room to Grow

Nadolsky once joked that he didn’t lift weights to look better. He does this to create more space to store carbohydrates. (As his online followers know, dietary carbohydrates are broken down into glucose and other sugars during digestion. Glycogen in muscle and liver is the storage form for these carbohydrates.)

While it takes time to build bigger muscles, the process has immediate benefits.

Like any other type of exercise, strength training can make your muscles sensitive to insulin, Nadolski says. This means your muscles will be ready to pull more glucose from your blood within a few hours of your workout.

Continued improvement over several months, people with type 2 diabetes typically increase muscle size and strength, improve blood pressure and insulin sensitivity , and increased bone mineral density, all by about 10% to 15%.

But there is no need to limit yourself to one form of exercise. “They’re both good in the long run,” Nadolski said. “My advice is to mix all of them.”

Your weekly mix might include two workouts that combine strength training and HIIT, and two longer cardio sessions. Or you can walk 5 or 6 days a week, but on 2 or 3 of those days, your walking pace varies between fast and slow.

For blood sugar management, a little exercise is better than no exercise. More exercise brings more benefits. But consistent workouts are best.



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