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When you have diabetes, it's important to get regular exercise. This helps control your blood sugar level. You can still play sports, run, ride a bike, swim, and do other activities when you have diabetes.
Getting regular exercise can help control your blood sugar.
Your body turns the food you eat into glucose, a type of sugar. You need this sugar for energy. When you have diabetes, the sugar builds up in your blood. But when you exercise, your body uses sugar. This helps keep it from building up in your blood and results in lower blood sugar and better control of diabetes.
Exercise may help you in other ways too. It can help you reach and stay at a healthy weight. It also helps improve blood pressure and cholesterol, which can reduce the risk of heart disease.
Exercise can make you feel stronger and happier. It can help you relax and sleep better. And it can give you confidence in other things you do.
Before you start a new exercise program, talk to your doctor or diabetes care team about how and when to exercise. Some types of exercise can be harmful if your diabetes is causing other problems, such as problems with your feet. Your doctor can tell you what types of exercise are good choices for you.
Here are some general safety tips.
Be careful about what you eat, especially when taking insulin.
This may help keep your blood sugar steady. If you want to exercise more, slowly increase how hard or long you exercise.
Or exercise at a gym. You may need help if your blood sugar drops too low.
You may get symptoms of low blood sugar during exercise or up to 24 hours later.
If you are used to exercising and notice that you cannot do as much as usual, talk to your doctor.
Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or diabetes care team if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.
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Adaptation Date: 5/7/2021
Adapted By: Alberta Health Services
Adaptation Reviewed By: Alberta Health Services
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