Exercise and Type 2 Diabetes
Suggestions on how to get started:
- Prolonged time spent sitting should be regularly interrupted (every 30 to 60 minutes) with light movement which can include walking around for a few minutes or stretching. Set a reminder on your phone or after each meeting get up and move.
- To get the most benefits, it is recommended to complete 150 minutes of moderate aerobic physical activity each week, you can break this down into 20 to 30-minute time blocks. During this time, it’s about getting your body moving, whether that be a brisk walk, jog or going for a cycle.
- It’s also recommended to complete at least 2 resistance exercise sessions also known as strength training. You don’t need to go to a gym to do this, you can simply perform these exercises at home using your own body weight. The types of exercises to include are squats, lunges and planks.
- Physical activity should be performed with no more than 2 days in a row with no activity. This due to physical activity having an immediate effect on insulin sensitivity, which can last for up to 72 hours post exercise2.
It’s important that you take extra caution and consult your GP before starting an exercise regime.
- Moderate aerobic physical activity such as brisk walking, jogging or cycling plays an important role in reducing the risk to type 2 diabetes. Research has shown that 30 minutes of brisk walking a day can reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes by 30%1,2.
- Aerobic physical activity involved a continuous movement of large muscle groups in your body which improves insulin sensitivity, lung function, and cardiovascular health. Prolonged sitting time should be interrupted with light movement for the benefits of blood glucose regulation and reducing the risk of type 2 diabetes.
- All adults are recommended to complete 150 minutes of moderate aerobic physical activity each week, you can break this into 30-minute bouts of exercise on 5 days a week. It’s also recommended to complete 2 to 3 strength training sessions. You don’t need to go to a gym to do this, you can simply perform these exercises at home using your own body weight.
- Exercise should be performed with no more than 2 days in a row with no activity. This due to physical activity having an immediate effect on insulin sensitivity, which can last for up to 72 hours post exercise3.
- Tanasescu, M., Leitzmann, M.F., Rimm, E.B., and Hu, F.B. (2003). “Physical Activity in Relation to Cardiovascular Disease and Total Mortality Among Men with Type 2 Diabetes.” 107(19): 2435-9.
- Hu, F.B., Sigal, R.J., Rich-Edwards, J.W., Colditz, G.A., Solomon, C.G., Willett, W.C., Speizer, F.E., Manson, J.E. (1999). “Walking Compared with Vigorous Physical Activity and Risk of Type 2 Diabetes in Women: A Prospective Study. The Journal of American Medical Association (JAMA). 282(15): 1433-1439.
- Bird, S.R., and Hawley, J.A. (2016). “Update on the effects of physical activity on insulin sensitivity in humans.” British Medical Journal of Sport and Exercise Medicine. 2(1): e000143.