We all are aware that exercise is good for our overall health, but when you have Diabetes it is even more important. Routine exercise will keep your muscles flexible, the blood circulation properly through your body, and keep your blood glucose levels stable as you go through your day.
Let’s discuss a few useful tips and information for safely exercising with diabetes. It is also recommended to make an appointment to see your doctor before starting an exercise program.
Easy Tips For Diabetics That Are Starting An Exercise Regime
- Invest in Proper Footwear. Choosing proper footwear is important for diabetics as it is possible to have altered sensation of the feet as well as slow-healing with any injuries. Keep your feet dry and check them regularly for blisters. Wearing socks made of polyester or a blend of cotton and polyester may be useful to prevent blisters. It is also important to wear athletic shoes that are in good shape and are the right type for your activity.
- Test Your Blood Sugar. It is imperative to test your blood sugar levels before, during, and after a workout. If you find that your blood sugar levels are below 100 mg/dl (5.6 mmol/l) before you even begin to exercise, it is recommended to have a snack that contains 15 grams of carbohydrate and test again in 15 minutes.
- Keep Something Sweet With You While Exercising. Keep a source of fast-acting carbohydrates (e.g., glucose gel or tablets, a sports drink or juice box) nearby you while exercising for the possibility of low blood sugar emergencies. It is also a good idea to carry energy or protein bars with you in your gym bag.
- Notify And Be In Contact With Your Doctor. If your exercise regime will involve more than a daily brisk walk, it is a good idea to check in first with your healthcare professional. Depending on your medications and health status, there are some types of activity may not be recommended. When your muscles are working harder, the insulin or medications that you take will work faster, putting you at an increased risk for low blood sugar. Be sure to discuss with your doctor regarding when is best to take your insulin and/or medications before you exercise.
- Exercise With A Friend. Working out with friends can be an important motivator, a source of accountability and a safety precaution as well. Be sure to let your workout buddy know that you have diabetes and how to take action if your blood sugar gets to low. It is also recommended to wear a medical identification tag or bracelet when working out so that others will know best how to help you in an emergency.
- Stay Hydrated. When you exercise, you lose water and that alone can upset your blood sugar levels. Be sure to drink water before, during, and after exercise to make up for what you lose. This is especially important if have diabetic nerve damage. Blood sugar monitoring when exercising is important and proper hydration is essential for accurate blood sugar monitoring results. Water is the best choice for hydration purposes and will not affect blood sugar. However, if your blood sugar drops due to your activity, then the better choice may be to consume a regular sports drink to meet your fluid needs and raise your blood sugar.
Exercise is an amazing way to take charge of your diabetes. Regular exercise will help to keep your blood sugar, blood pressure, and cholesterol levels in healthy ranges. Always take the above-listed precautions to avoid emergencies while exercising with diabetes.