One of every 3 American adults has
prediabetes—that’s about 84 million people. But the alarming thing is,
90 percent don’t know they have prediabetes, leaving them at greater
risk of developing type 2 diabetes or other serious health conditions.
Additionally, 1 of every 10 Americans has
diabetes—that’s more than 30 million people. And most of them (90-95
percent of these 30 million people) have type 2 diabetes which means their
bodies don’t use insulin properly.
But the most encouraging news concerning prediabetes and type 2 diabetes
is, unlike many health conditions, you’re in the driver’s
seat because diabetes is managed mostly by you.
How do you manage diabetes? It can be challenging, but the three main components
that directly affect your diabetes are:
- Healthy eating
- Physical activity
- Insulin or other medications prescribed by your doctor to help control
your blood sugar
A fourth factor includes support. Who can provide support and help you
manage your diabetes? You may need a support team, including any or all
of the following:
- Your primary care provider
- Additional doctors including your dentist, eye doctor, foot doctor, etc.
- Your spouse, family members, and close friends
- A diabetes educator
- A registered dietitian or nutritionist
And now there is a new form of support available to the greater Frederick
Frederick Health ProMotion Fitness, which offers your very own “exercise prescription” tailored
to your needs.
Exercise is a key component to managing prediabetes and type 2 diabetes.
According to the
American Diabetes Association, when you’re active, your cells become more sensitive to insulin
so it works more effectively.
The word “exercise” might be scary to some people, but medical
experts encourage all prediabetic or type 2 diabetic patients to begin
physical activity wherever you are. Within days, you will likely feel
Here are some simple ways to begin incorporating fitness into your daily schedule:
- Take a light walk.
- Better yet, take a light walk with a loved one, a friend, or neighbor.
- Park a little further away from your workplace (or the grocery store) to
incorporate more walking into your day.
- Take the stairs instead of elevators.
- Put on music and dance around your kitchen while you’re preparing dinner.
- Play outdoors with your children or grandchildren.
- Gardening, or doing the laundry, counts as physical activity.
Once you have incorporated regular activity into your daily routine, you’ll
begin to build up your endurance to at least 150 minutes per week of activities
that are moderate to vigorous in intensity. That translates to 30 minutes
a day, five days a week.
Moderate-intensity exercise includes:
- Brisk walking
- Light cycling
- Water exercise
Vigorous exercise includes:
- Playing tennis
- Hiking, especially if hills are involved
All of these activities will help your body store and use glucose more
efficiently—but there are countless additional benefits such as
improved heart health, mental health, reduced stress, and even having fun.
If you have prediabetes, lifestyle changes such as exercise can lower your
risk of developing type 2 diabetes. In addition to being prediabetic,
if you are also overweight, then exercise can be even more significant
for your health. Losing a small amount of weight—5 to 7 percent
of your body weight, 10 to 14 pounds for a 200-pound person—can
make a big impact on your health.
Need help getting started?
Frederick Health ProMotion Fitness provides a safe and supportive environment designed to partner with you
in reaching your exercise goals. Utilizing the global Exercise is Medicine
initiative, Frederick Health ProMotion Fitness works with you and your
healthcare provider to develop an exercise prescription tailored to your
individual needs. We even offer free “Living Well with Diabetes”
workshops. Call 240-215-1470 if you are interested in starting the program,
want to schedule a tour, or need more information.
Here are some additional resources available to you: