Fitness Resources


Exercise and Diabetes and Pre-Diabetes

No Comments

Have You Been Told You Are Prediabetic or a Type I, II or Gestational Diabetic?

All of these conditions are defined by the body’s inability either to make or to use insulin. Insulin is a hormone that your body needs to help it turn glucose from the food we eat into energy. Think of insulin as the body’s messenger who collects glucose in the blood and delivers it to the cell receptor sites that, in turn, use the glucose to produce energy. Without enough insulin, glucose stays in the blood, and over time, this excess glucose builds up, leading to damage in your kidneys, heart, nerves, eyes and other organs.

Let’s look at what each condition is.

A person who is prediabetic suffers from a mild form of diabetes sometimes called “impaired glucose tolerance.” Being prediabetic is a major risk factor for developing type II diabetes. The primary risk factors for becoming prediabetic are poor nutrition and a lack of exercise.

Type I diabetes starts in childhood when the pancreas stops producing insulin. The primary risk factor is family history of this chronic disease.

Type II diabetes is sometimes called “insulin resistance.” Type II diabetes develops when the body’s cells can’t use the insulin that the pancreas produces. When cells are unable to absorb efficiently the glucose carried by insulin, the pancreas tries to compensate by producing more insulin. Eventually, it can’t keep up, and the body’s glucose level gets out of balance. Type II diabetes typically develops in adults, but it can begin any time in life. The childhood obesity epidemic is leading to an increase in type II diabetes among teenagers. The primary risk factor for this form of diabetes is being overweight or obese.
Gestational diabetes is triggered during pregnancy. It is caused by hormones that are produced by the placenta and that sometimes block the function of insulin in the mother’s body. Risk factors include weight, a history of glucose intolerance, a family history of diabetes and age.

The general risk factors for diabetes are a family history of the disease, ethnic background, age, a sedentary lifestyle, hypertension, low levels of HDL (good) cholesterol and high triglyceride levels.

Diabetes and prediabetes are increasing at alarming rates; an estimated 39% of women and 33% of men born in the year 2000 will develop diabetes during their lifetimes. In African American and Hispanic populations, the incidence of diabetes is expected to be even higher (45% to 53%). Both diabetes and prediabetes can lead to serious health problems including heart attack, peripheral arterial disease, stroke, blindness and kidney failure. Lifestyle changes including exercise and diet are important factors in the treatment of type 1 diabetes as well as the prevention and treatment of type II diabetes and pre diabetes. (This needs a citation. I have made tweaks to fit the style of the rest of the article, including using “II” instead of “2” and “prediabetes” instead of “pre-diabetes” [per Merriam Webster, “prediabetes” is correct.])

Fitness Resources trainers work with clients to design an exercise routine in an effort to prevent and manage diabetes.

An  important part of any exercise program for the prevention and management of diabetes is increasing muscle mass (glucose receptor sites) through resistance training. Each 10% increase in skeletal muscle results in a 10% reduction in insulin resistance and a 12% reduction in prediabetes.

Researcher Arun S. Karlamangla, MD, PhD and associate professor of medicine in the division of geriatrics at the University of California, Los Angeles argues that “[i]t’s not just weight that matters, but what portion of your weight is muscle mass.” His point is clarified by John Buse, MD, PhD and chief of endocrinology at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, who points out that muscle is among the most insulin-sensitive tissues in the body. “The more muscle mass you have,” says Buse. “the more glucose you can dispose of in response to insulin.”


Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism, September [year]

[From where did you get the quotes from these two doctors? You need the publication or web page, not just their names.]
John Buse, MD, PhD, chief of endocrinology at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

Arun S. Karlamangla, MD, PhD, associate professor of medicine in the division of geriatrics at the University of California, Los Angeles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *