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Tips for exercising with diabetes

by Freya 3 minutes read

Last updated: 20 Jun, 2022

Exercising can be a great way to take control of your diabetes, it will allow your blood sugar, blood pressure, and cholesterol levels stay on track.

If you are wanting to use exercise to help with your diabetes, or perhaps you just want to get into working out but are worried about getting started with the condition.

We will be including information that has been medically reviewed by professionals in order to make sure you do things safely.

How Much Exercise Should You Get?

Studies show that those with diabetes should get around 150 minutes of aerobic exercise per week. Regular aerobic exercise can encourage insulin to work better and lower blood pressure in the long term.

If you are not interested in aerobic exercise, alternatively you could do two to three sessions of strength training per week. When you have a higher muscle mass it usually results in your body handling blood sugar more effectively.

Note: before starting your fitness journey, make sure you talk to a doctor first, you may be advised to start slowly and steadily increase how often you workout, along with other factors you need to consider.

Tips for exercising safely

  • Wear your medical ID bracelet or carry your Medical ID with you

  • Drink plenty of water before, during, and after exercise - you can lose water through sweat, this can upset your blood sugar levels if you do not drink

  • Check your blood sugar level before and after working out to ensure they are at a safe level - your doctor can tell you your target range

  • Eat something with in 2 hours of working out

  • Notice any changes that could indicate low blood sugar, for example shaking, anxiousness, sweating more than normal, or changes in your heartbeat

  • Observe the temperature, your body will use insulin in extreme temperatures, whether that’s hot or cold

Top 5 exercises for those with diabetes

Remember: daily tasks that raise your heart rate can be included as part of the 150 minutes of aerobic exercise you should get per week, this could be playing things such as tag with your children, taking the stairs, or doing gardening.

  1. Walking

  2. Yoga

  3. Dancing

  4. Swimming

  5. Tai Chi

Always listen to your body, if you become short of breath, lightheaded, or dizzy, stop exercising immediately!

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