Regular exercise complements a healthy diet, and diabetes is no exception. Moderate activity can lower your blood glucose and help your body process foods more efficiently without causing sugar spikes. The AHA recommends at least 30 minutes of activity per day for at least five days a week. Moderate exercises can include:
- brisk walking
- bike riding
- using an elliptical machine
Consider monitoring your blood glucose before and after exercise, just like you do before and after meals. This can give you a better sense of how effective exercise is in lowering blood sugar. Such readings can also tell you whether or not you need to adjust insulin intake. If your blood sugar level is very high (above 300 mg/dL), refrain from exercising and seek medical advice from your doctor. If your blood sugar level is above 350 mg/dL or if “ketones” (acids that your body produces if there’s a shortage of insulin in the blood and your body is forced to use fats instead of carbohydrates for energy) are noted in your urine, you should call 911.