Exercise comes under non pharmacological therapy for Diabetes treatment along with diet.

It plays an important role in the therapy of patients. An exercise prescription needs to be tailored to each person's circumstances. Exercise recommendations may differ widely based on type of Diabetes, age group or special characteristics of the patient and absence or presence of chronic diabetic complications.

Benefits of Exercise

1-Increases Insulin sensitivity, hence reduce Blood sugars and also reduce the requirement of medications

2-Lower Blood pressure

3-Helps to correct Dyslipidemia

4-Enhance Weight loss/ Weight maintenance

5-Decrease body fat

6-Reduce stress

7-Increase basal metabolic rate

General Principles

-Begin each exercise with a warm up period for 5-10 min and end with a similar cool down period

-Exercise at least 30-45 minutes every day for a minimum of 4-5 days a week .in total , at least 150min/week

-All patients should be encouraged to reduce sedentary time, especially by breaking long duration sitting (more than 90min)


-Before starting exercise program evaluate for micro and macro vascular complications, which may be worsened by excersise.

-Patient aged more than 35years and with evidence of any complications or cardiovascular risk factors should undergo exercise stress test prior to starting an exercise program.


-Always carry Diabetic identity card

-Carry candy or glucose

-Drink plenty of water

-Avoid strenuous exercise if patient has advanced retinopathy

-Use proper footwear

-Check feet before and after each exercise

-Seek medical advice if patient having any persistent complaints

-Take a small snack before exercise

Good Daily Habits

-In routine choose longer route while walking

-Use steps instead of elevator

-Park the vehicle far away and walk

There is no single best and worst exercise..It all matters according to patients as mentioned above.

To add aerobic exercise is the preferred one.

Resistance exercise with more than 2kg weight doesn't have any additional advantage with insulin resistance.

Stay Safe ...Stay Healthy-

Dr Nadeem Abootty

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