Prediabetes: Exercise Tips

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Prediabetes: Exercise Tips

Topic Overview

If you have been diagnosed with prediabetes, you have an opportunity to prevent the progression of this condition to full-blown type 2 diabetes. Studies have shown that by getting regular exercise, changing your diet, and losing weight, you can play a key role in preventing diabetes. Any type of physical activity may be beneficial, such as:1

  • Sports or other types of exercise, such as walking, jogging, swimming, or biking.
  • Household work, such as vacuuming or gardening.
  • Work-related activities.

Try to do moderate exercise for at least 2½ hours spread over at least 3 days that are not in a row. The Canadian Diabetes Association suggests that you include resistance exercises in your program.

It's fine to be active in blocks of 10 minutes or more throughout your day and week.

The Canadian Diabetes Association's "Verve" guide shows ways you can make small changes to your lifestyle that can have a big impact on preventing prediabetes and type 2 diabetes. These changes include:

  • Setting weight-loss goals.
  • Adding exercise to your life.
  • Tracking your progress.

For more information, search for Verve on the Canadian Diabetes Association's Web site at www.diabetes.ca.

Before starting an exercise program

  • Talk to your doctor about how and when to exercise. You may need to have a medical exam and special tests (such as a treadmill test) before you begin.
  • Choose a type of exercise that you like and that fits easily into your daily schedule. If you choose something you like, you will be more likely to continue the program.

During exercise

  • Drink plenty of water before, during, and after you are active. This is very important when it’s hot out and when you do intense exercise.
  • Don't exercise if you are sick or injured or if the weather is very hot or very cold.
  • Choose the best time and place to exercise. A poorly lit street with uneven pavement would not be a good choice.
  • Wear shoes that fit well and polyester or blend (cotton-polyester) socks to keep your feet comfortable and prevent injury. Use silica gel or air midsoles in your shoes to keep your feet dry and comfortable.

For more information, see the topic Fitness.

Related Information

References

Citations

  1. Diabetes Prevention Program Research Group (2009). 10-year follow-up of diabetes incidence and weight loss in the Diabetes Prevention Program Outcomes Study. Lancet, 374: 1677–1686.

Credits

By Healthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
Primary Medical Reviewer Anne C. Poinier, MD - Internal Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer David C.W. Lau, MD, PhD, FRCPC - Endocrinology
Last Revised September 3, 2010

This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information.