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The Best Exercises to Do If You Have Prediabetes, According to Personal Trainers

0 2 years ago

Thought to be the result of the standard American diet (SAD) that’s rich in refined carbs and shy in activity—about 23% of us rack up our recommended physical activity minutes—a whopping one in three American adults has prediabetes, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. This precursor to type 2 diabetes involves blood sugar that is elevated, but not to the level to be officially diagnosed as type 2.

Related: What Is Prediabetes—And 6 Steps to Help You Manage It

Most prediabetes and type 2 diabetes interventions focus mostly on food, but mounting scientific evidence suggests that it’s much more effective to give this condition a one-two punch with both diet and exercise. Read on for more about the latest research, plus what trainers suggest as the best exercises for those who have prediabetes.

Blood Sugar 101

Let’s rewind a bit: Blood sugar, a.k.a. blood glucose, is the usable form of energy our body makes out of the food we eat. Foods higher in quick-burning carbs or added sugar, such as sugary candy and white pasta, triggers a larger spike in blood sugar than, say, blueberries or beans, which have fiber and nutrients to slow down their digestion. In a healthy body, the pancreas pumps out the amount of insulin needed to help to usher the blood sugar to cells so that they can use it as energy.

In those with type 1 diabetes, the body is genetically unable to produce insulin. And in those with type 2, the body’s cells become unable to respond to that insulin, so the sugar accumulates in the blood. (Hence, why pre diabetics are often referred to as “insulin resistant.” See more about the differences between type 1 and type 2 here.)


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