Exercise is a great way to help control diabetes. It helps blood sugar levels stay on track and it can help make insulin work better. However, there are safety precautions diabetics should take while exercising.
- Start slow and build up exercise intensity. This allows the body to become used to the activity.
- Keep an eye on blood sugar levels. One should check them frequently before and after exercise, especially if one is new to it. Exercise affects everyone’s blood sugar differently. Make a log and track blood sugar levels daily. This can provide insight as to how exercise generally affects each person’s blood sugar.
- Bring a snack. Keep a snack of fast-acting carbohydrates on hand in case blood sugar drops low.
- Do not exercise if blood sugar is low or too high. If your blood sugar is lower than 100 mg/dl or higher than 250-300 mg/dl, exercise can make it easier for sugar levels to go into a dangerous territory. Wait until blood sugar level is in a better range before exercising.
- Have identification: Wear a medical i.d. tag or bracelet in case hypoglycemia strikes. This way, others will know how to provide appropriate help.
Finally, before beginning any exercise routines, consult with a doctor. He or she will be able to discuss appropriate exercises and provide insight into how it may affect medication effectiveness.