Exercise is extremely helpful in the management of diabetes. People with diabetes should exercise outdoors or indoors, using fitness equipment like a treadmill, which is the same as walking or running outside. As many people have no time or do not want to exercise outside, treadmills are comfortable and convenient to them.
Diet, exercise, and medication (if prescribed) are three vital factors to control diabetes. These three things will assist you in maintaining a healthy weight and blood glucose level. But, diet and medications are beyond the scope of my expertise and would require pages of professional advice for each individual. I’ll go through only how exercise can be beneficial in assisting in the control of the diabetes.
Before going too deep into the title, can a treadmill help to control diabetes? Let us give a chance to introduce different types of diabetes in a nutshell.
Prediabetes: This is a situation in which your blood sugar levels are elevated but no immediate treatment is necessary. According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), prediabetes is a condition that is reversible. Dietary and physical activity adjustments, as well as medication, may be used to treat the condition. According to the Mayo Clinic, if you have prediabetes and do not make lifestyle adjustments, you could acquire type 2 diabetes within ten years.
Prediabetes affects around 88 million American adults-more than one-third of the population. More than 84 percent of people with prediabetes are unaware of their condition.
Type 1 Diabetes: Type 1 diabetes, also known as insulin-dependent diabetes or juvenile diabetes, is a chronic illness in which the pancreas produces little or no insulin. Insulin is a hormone that allows sugar (glucose) into cells for energy production.
Type 1 diabetes can be caused by a variety of factors, including genetics and viruses. Although type 1 diabetes most commonly manifests in infancy or adolescence, it can also manifest in adulthood.
Despite ongoing research, there is no treatment for type 1 diabetes. To avoid complications, treatment emphasizes on controlling blood sugar levels with insulin, food, and lifestyle changes.
Type 2 Diabetes: This is the most common kind of diabetes, affecting around 30 million Americans. Those who have type 2 diabetes can make insulin, but they’re unable to use it properly.
Type 2 diabetes has no cure, but decreasing weight, eating healthily, and exercising can help you manage it. If diet and exercise aren’t adequate to control your blood sugar, diabetes medicines or insulin therapy may be required.
Gestational Diabetes: Diabetes diagnosed for the first time during pregnancy is known as gestational diabetes (gestation). Gestational diabetes, like other types of diabetes, affects how your cells use sugar (glucose). High blood sugar levels caused by gestational diabetes can harm your pregnancy and your baby’s health.
While any pregnancy issue is alarming, there is some positive news. Pregnant women can help control gestational diabetes by consuming healthy meals, exercising, and taking medication if necessary. Blood sugar control can help you and your baby stay healthy and avoid a traumatic birth.
Can A Treadmill Help To Control Diabetes?
The answer is “Yes”-up to a certain level of physical activity (discussed below) like walking or running on a treadmill. It helps in many different ways. Exercising like walking or jogging on a treadmill helps to control diabetes by following ways-
- Exercising improves blood circulation and lowers your risk of developing heart disease. According to the American Heart Association, adults with diabetes are two to four times more likely to have a heart attack or stroke.
- Improving the body’s ability to utilize insulin.
- Reducing stress.
- Exercising burns excess body fat, aiding in weight loss and boosting energy levels and work capabilities.
- Exercising on a treadmill helps to improve diabetes control by increasing muscle insulin sensitivity for up to 24 to 48 hours after the exercise session. This is due to increased glucose uptake by muscle for glycogen replenishment.
- It helps to increase muscle strength.
- Exercising helps relieve tension and anxiety.
- Contributes to the development of bone density and strength.
- Assists in lowering blood pressure.
- Contributing to the prevention of heart and blood vessel disease by decreasing harmful cholesterol low-density lipoprotein (LDL) and increasing good cholesterol high-density lipoprotein (HDL).
Preparations & Precautions For Diabetes Patient To Exercise On A Treadmill
- You must take precautions to keep your feet safe and avoid acquiring blisters or sores. Get fitted for athletic shoes that are flat and flexible. Stay away from cotton socks and tube socks and instead go for athletic socks or diabetic socks made of sweat-wicking polyester fiber.
- Do not skip meals or go too long without eating before exercising. If your blood glucose is below 70 mg/dL or above 300 mg/dL, or if you have a fasting blood glucose of more than 250 mg/dL with ketones in your urine, don’t exercise. If you develop numbness or pain in your extremities while exercising or afterward, visit a doctor right once.
- Low blood sugar, which can occur during intensive and longer exercising and can lead to a diabetic coma or other consequences, should be avoided. If exercising for more than an hour, patients should test their blood sugar levels at regular intervals. They should inspect their feet for scrapes(1), blisters(2), and sores(3) before and during activity, drink lots of water, and keep a fast-acting carbohydrate snack on hand in case of hypoglycemia or low blood sugar.
- Remember that if you take insulin, you should wait an hour before doing any type of exercise.
- Ensure that you are putting less strain on your body and lowering your risk of injury during workout on a treadmill. Improving your running form can help you run faster, more efficiently, and comfortably. You can place a mirror in front of a treadmill. This will help you to analyze and work on your posture and walking technique.
- It is highly advisable to talk with a medical practitioner, before starting or changing any exercise program.
How Does Walking Or Running On A Treadmill Control Diabetes?
The amount of glucose (sugar) in the blood rises after eating, and the pancreas releases insulin. Insulin stimulates the liver and muscles to absorb excess glucose from the bloodstream. As a result, the level of glucose in the blood is lowered significantly.
When engaging in physical activity, such as walking or running on a treadmill, the body requires additional energy or fuel (in the form of glucose) to supply the working muscles with the energy they require. A short workout like walking on a treadmill for 30 minutes, with at least 20 continuous minutes at a brisk pace (3 to 4 mph), causes the muscles and liver to release glucose for fuel.
According to a study published in the Indian Journal of Clinical Biochemistry, daily exercise helps diabetes people to control their blood sugar levels.
Intense exercise or longer exercise is not recommended for diabetics because it can have the reverse effect of raising blood glucose levels. The body perceives strenuous exercise or longer exercise as a source of stress and releases stress hormones, causing blood glucose levels to rise.
To prevent raising of blood glucose level due to strenuous exercise on a treadmill, it is better to choice a treadmill that have an advanced digital features so that you can easily track the distance walked, calories burned, etc.
These features are beneficial if you are walking with the goal of controlling diabetes since they allow you to track your daily effort and achieve your daily goals for better results. A good number of best treadmills for diabetes patients are available on Amazon.com.
What Is The Best Exercise To Control Blood Glucose Levels?
People with diabetes can benefit from brisk walking on a treadmill or in the outside. However, strenuous exercise, such as jogging or interval training, might have a negative impact on their blood glucose levels if they do it too often.
Recent research on Hispanic men and women found that sixteen weeks of strength training resulted in significant improvements in glucose control that were comparable to those achieved by taking diabetes medication. In addition, the study participants were became stronger, increased muscle, decreased body fat, had less depression, and felt more self-confident.
What Types Of Treadmill Exercises Can People With Diabetes Do?
Before you begin exercising, talk with your doctor or physician to determine the ideal exercise program for you.
Can you run on the treadmill? How long can you exercise on the treadmill? Can you do interval training or hill training on a treadmill?
Ask your physician for answers to all of these inquiries. Once you’ve figured it out, start walking on the treadmill, either briskly or quickly.
Diabetes is a manageable condition, but left untreated it can significantly affect the length or quality of life, cause even death. Exercise on a treadmill is an excellent way to live a longer life, whether you have diabetes or not.
Some amputations are required that may have been avoided by altering your lifestyle and monitoring your blood sugar levels. Never take it for granted; it is a chronic condition that requires continuous monitoring and management.
Regular exercise will regulate your diabetes while also making you feel great over time. Exercise begins to increase the levels of feel-good hormones in your body after a few weeks of consistent activity. It is not necessary to practice it for an extended period of time, and it offers numerous health benefits for both the body and the mind.
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