GAR­DEN­ING IS THE PER­FECT MEDICINE

Scottish Daily Mail - - Coffeebreak - For in­for­ma­tion on get­ting ac­tive go to di­a­betes.co.uk. Dr Col­berg’s web­site, di­a­betes­mo­tion.com of­fers ad­vice for ex­er­cis­ing with di­a­betes. CHECK with your doc­tor if plan­ning an ex­treme change or a new reg­i­men (such as run­ning) for the first time, says D

EX­ER­CISE is vi­tal for pre­vent­ing type 2 di­a­betes — but even sim­ply just mov­ing more can help con­trol and even re­verse the con­di­tion.

This is be­cause when­ever we ex­er­cise, our bod­ies use sugar to make en­ergy. This sugar comes from the blood­stream and from the mus­cles and liver (where it’s stored as glyco­gen).

The benefits aren’t just phys­i­cal. Canadian re­search sug­gests that in­ac­tive adults with type 2 di­a­betes are al­most twice as likely to be de­pressed as those who are phys­i­cally ac­tive.

‘The peo­ple start­ing out with the low­est lev­els of fit­ness have the big­gest gains to make from just be­ing less in­ac­tive,’ says Dr Sheri Col­berg, pro­fes­sor of ex­er­cise science at Old Do­min­ion Uni­ver­sity in the U.S. She ar­gues that ex­er­cise ‘is a forgotten tool’ for treat­ing di­a­betes.

THE EX­ER­CISE SO­LU­TION

IN­STEAD of think­ing about ‘ex­er­cise’, which can be daunt­ing, think in terms of in­creas­ing your ‘phys­i­cal ac­tiv­ity’, which means ev­ery­thing you do counts — for ex­am­ple, walk­ing to the shops.

‘Think about just stand­ing up more dur­ing the day,’ says Dr Col­berg. ‘Don’t sit for longer than an hour at a time.’ Pro­longed sit­ting is thought to slow the me­tab­o­lism, af­fect­ing the body’s abil­ity to reg­u­late blood sugar.

‘Walk­ing is ideal. And once you start walk­ing more, add in faster in­ter­vals — for ex­am­ple, walk­ing a lit­tle faster be­tween two drive­ways, in­ter­mit­tently.’

The Depart­ment of Health ad­vises at least 150 min­utes of mod­er­ate- i nten­sity aer­o­bic ac­tiv­ity ev­ery week — such as cy­cling, fast walk­ing, wa­ter aer­o­bics, push­ing a man­ual lawn­mower — as well as mus­cle­strength­en­ing ac­tiv­i­ties (weights, work­ing out with re­sis­tance bands, heavy gar­den­ing, yoga or ex­er­cises that use body weight for re­sis­tance, such as sit-ups) on two or more days a week.

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