Education concerning exercise, proper nutrition, and preventative care are an ever increasing necessity in a society facing afflictions from ailments and disease. Many of these afflictions, such as diabetes, can be invented, or managed with proper guidance. Our lifestyle choices often play a major role in our overall health and well being.
Diabetes is a condition in which the body does not make, makes too little, or can not properly utilize insulin (a hormone produced in the pancreas responsible for regulating the level of glucose). These results in hyperglycemia, or excessive amounts of blood sugar. If not properly managed, diabetes may increase the risk of heart disease, kidney disease, gangrene, hypertension, and stroke.
Some of the symptoms of diabetes are blurred vision, increased hunger, increased thirst, constant fatigue / lethargy, headaches, and frequent urination.
Complications of diabetes
Excessive blood sugar may have a strong negative impact on kidneys and the liver, which may result in kidney disease and liver disease respectively.
Circulatory problems caused by diabetes may result in damage to nerves. Clogging (and "furring up") of blood vessels may occur if hypertension and high cholesterol exist in the individual. This could result in damage to the heart, legs, brain, and other parts of the body that have large blood vessels.
Types of diabetes
Type I (insulin dependent)
Type I diabetes; also know as juvenile diabetes, is a condition in which the body does not produce insulin, therefore it has to be administrated. It is usually diagnosed in children and young adults. Checking glucose levels and knowing when to take insulin is extremely important. Although incurable, proper nutrition and exercise, which we will discuss later, are ways to manage this type.
Type II (insulin non-dependent)
In cases of type II diabetes, the body does not make enough insulin, or it can not use the insulin properly. It is often diagnosed in overweight adults. Cases of this type are diagnosed significantly more than type I. living a healthy, active lifestyle may help to prevent this type; individuals who have developed type II diabetes may be able to reduce, or alleviate themselves of the disorder altogether by living a healthy lifestyle.
Gestational diabetes occurs in women that are pregnant, and although it normally subsides after giving birth, it may indicate an increased risk of the individual ever developing type II diabetes if steps to avoid it are not taken.
According to the Centers for disease control, diabetes affects approximately 24 million people in the United States (according to the projection produced in the year 2007).
Weight loss and diabetes
An important aspect of managing diabetes is managing weight. Reducing excess weight and keeping body fat low has been shown to reduce (or, in some cases eliminate) risk associated with the disorder in type II.
The importance of proper nutrition
There are three types of carbohydrates; low glycemic (complex, or slow burning carbs), high glycemic (simple, or fast burning carbs), and dietary fiber (indigestible part of vegetation).
Examples of carbohydrates sources to include in a meal plan.
- Leafy green vegetables
- Whole grains
- Vegetables such as broccoli, carrots, and green beans
Carbohydrate intake should revolve around activity level and consist of low glycemic foods. By spreading carbohydrates out throughout the day, and using activity level to aid in calculating the caloric need for carbs (checking glucose with a glucometer is the primary way), those with diabetes could avoid a rise (hyperglycemia), or fall (hypoglycemia) of blood sugar.
There are four types of fat; saturated fat, unsaturated fat, trans fat, and cholesterol.
When planning meals, focus should be placed on unsaturated fats. While planned and trans fats have a negative impact on blood pressure and cholesterol, healthy, unsaturated fats actually have a tendency to raise HDL's (good cholesterol) levels.
Keep diet cholesterol low to avoid raising LDL's (bad cholesterol)
Examples of fat sources to include in a meal plan.
- Olive oil
- Canola oil
- Nuts / seeds
Protein is responsible for building muscle and plays a large role in keeping the body in an anabolic (or "building up") state.
Although intake amounts vary per individual, protein should be consumed with every meal.
Examples of protein sources to include in a meal plan.
Exercise and diabetes
In addition to potential fat loss, (this could result in healthy blood pressure and cholesterol levels), exercise promotes better cardiovascular and circulatory health. This lowers the risk of diabetic complications.
It's a good idea to test glucose levels before and after training. This aids in determining dietary needs, as well as the best exercise intensity level.
Those with type I diabetes should keep workouts short (20-30 minutes) and of a low to moderate intensity to avoid drastic changes in blood sugar level.
Example exercise routine (type I)
M- 15 minutes of moderate cardio (treadmill), dumbbell press 15 reps x 2 sets, cable pull downs 15 x 2sets, cable fly's 15 x 1 set
T-10 minutes low-moderate cardio (treadmill), leg extensions 15 x 2 sets, leg curls 15 x 2 sets; squats 20 x 1 set, lunges 15 x 1 set calf raises 20 x 2 set
W-20 minutes low intensity cardio (treadmill) bicep curls 10 x2 sets, overhead press 15 x 1 set, forward later raise 10 x 1 set, side lateral raise 10 x 1 set
TH- squats 10 x 2 sets, lat pull downs 15 x3 sets; bent over row 10 x 1 set, dead lift 10 x 1 set,
F- 20 minutes of moderate
Those with type two may find a longer work out of 45-60 minutes to be more beneficial, it could help them achieve a greater level of fat loss. Excess body fat may have contributed to the disorder, so by lowering their body fat percentage, they may be able to control, or rid themselves of the disease.
Example exercise plan (type II)
M- 15 minutes low intensity cardio, 20 minutes of moderate cardio, 10 minutes low intensity cardio
T-bench press 15 reps x 3 sets; incline bench press 15 x 2 set; decline bench press 15 x 2 set; cable pull downs 15 x 2sets; triceps extensions 10 x 2 sets; cable flies 10 x 2; 10 minutes low intensity cardio
W-15 minutes low intensity cardio, 25 minutes moderate cardio, and 10 minutes low intensity cardio
TH-lat pull downs 10 x 2, overhead press 10 x 2, lined cable row 15 x 2, forward lateral raise 10 x 2, side lateral raise 10 x 2, bicep curls 10 x 3, preacher curls 10 x 2, shoulder shrugs 15 x 2
F-Squats 15 x 2, leg extensions (single leg) 10 x2, leg extensions (both legs) 10 x 2, leg curls 10 x 3, calf raises 15 x 3, 10 minutes of low intensity cardio
SA-15 minutes low intensity cardio, 30 minutes moderate cardio, and 15 minutes low intensity cardio
A full workout plan is determined after performance of these types of plans for 1 week (unless changes are needed sooner). Heart rate, glucose levels, ability to perform each task, as well as clients exercise preferences will all play a role in writing a suitable workout schedule.
The choices we make play a big part in our overall health; by living a healthy lifestyle, you greatly increase your chances of preventing, managing, or even eliminating diabetes.