Fresh Information

August 12, 2010

Prevent Diabetes

Physical Fitness May Reverse Or Prevent Diabetes

Morning run is a healthy sport and least expensive

By Fletcher Smith

Perhaps you have seen a certain, popular weight loss show on TV where the overweight contestants begin with a doctor’s visit and are usually given the bad news that they have type-II diabetes or at least are pre-diabetic. After a few months of working out and eating right they have not only lost a considerable amount of weight, but are generally informed that their diabetes and other health issues are miraculously gone. Well, this is not a fairy tale. It can happen for you too. If you want it!

Also, recent research has shown that type-II diabetes can be controlled with proper diet and exercise. By losing as little as 5% to 7% of their weight, people at high risk for diabetes can often delay or even prevent diabetes. But who is considered high risk?

  • People who are overweight or obese
  • The physically inactive
  • People with abnormal cholesterol levels (not just high)
  • People with high blood pressure
  • African-Americans, American Indians, Asian-Americans, Pacific Islanders, Latinos
  • People with a family history of diabetes

So what can you do about it? Well, unfortunately for several of these factors, there is nothing you can do. So you have to address the ones that you can help, and being obese was listed first for a reason. It is probably the #1 indicator for diabetes. Being overweight can make it hard for your body to make and use insulin properly. It can also directly affect your blood pressure and cholesterol levels. The good news here is that your weight is the one factor that you are directly in control of.

Basically, there are two key factors to controlling your weight;

  • Moderate exercise
  • Proper, healthy food choices

As for exercising with diabetes, it is recommended that you get about 30 minutes per day, 5 days a week. This can be done by typical activities like walking, hiking, biking, climbing stairs, swimming (especially if you already have feet or leg issues) or many other daily activities. Also, there are several good aerobic exercises specifically designed for people living with diabetes. You can also incorporate strength training with resistance bands or weight machines. Remember, muscle increases your metabolism so, gain muscle, loose fat. The key is to find an activity that you enjoy so you will look forward to it and become consistent.

As for your food choices, my favorite rule is to avoid processed foods when ever possible. If it does not look like what you call it, then it is probably processed and most likely unhealthy. What should you eat then? Well, a good start is plenty of fruits and vegetables (peas and beans, broccoli and dark green leafy vegetables are some of the better choices). Whole grain bread and pasta are healthy alternatives to processed white breads. For protein, fish should be eaten several times a week (not fried though). Lean red meat such as sirloin and skinless poultry are also good protein choices. Always choose non-fat dairy products and drink lots of water. The other important piece of controlling your weight is controlling portion sizes. A good rule of thumb is to never eat more than will fit in the palm of you hand. That is what size your stomach should be and it will adjust quickly to your new regime and the hunger pains will subside.

Remember, get active and eat good food and you too could delay, prevent or even reverse type-II diabetes. It is all up to you. And as always, please talk to your doctor prior to beginning any exercise or diet (but I am fairly certain they will agree).

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