Diabetes Mellitus is a group of metabolic diseases characterised by elevated blood glucose levels due to decreased insulin secretion or sensitivity. Sustained high levels of blood glucose increases risk for further complications and diseases affecting the whole body. These further complications include heart attack, stroke, kidney disease, limb amputation, depression, anxiety, and blindness. There are a few main types of diabetes; Type 1 Diabetes Mellitus (T1DM), Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus (T2DM), prediabetes, and gestational diabetes. All types of diabetes are serious and require daily care and management.
T1DM is an auto-immune condition resulting in the pancreas producing little to no insulin. While insulin replacement is critical to the management of T1DM, regular exercise can also aid in the management of this condition. Exercise helps insulin to work better. Furthermore, it will help you maintain a healthy weight and improve your overall health.
T2DM is caused by insulin resistance in skeletal muscle, adipose tissue and liver, combined with decreased insulin production. Insulin allows our cells to take in glucose to use as energy. When the cells that produce insulin get tired and produce less of the hormone, we end up with T2DM. Furthermore, the cells in our body are unable to respond properly to the insulin that is in the system. Regular physical activity, as well as healthy eating, is crucial to managing T2DM. The energy demand from our muscles increases when we exercise and so, they are required to take up more glucose from the blood; lowering your blood glucose levels.
Prediabetes is a condition that usually comes before T2DM. Prediabetes means that your blood glucose levels are higher than normal. Appropriate management and lifestyle changes can reverse this type of diabetes, preventing its progression to T2DM.
Gestational diabetes occurs during pregnancy. Most women will return to normal blood glucose levels following their pregnancy. However, there is an increased risk of either the mother or child developing Type 2 diabetes later in life. Daily medical treatment is available to manage your symptoms during pregnancy, alongside regular exercise.
Your GP can diagnose diabetes following impaired glucose tolerance and impaired fasting glucose tests.
Exercise is a very important aspect in the management of diabetes. Book in with one of our health professionals to discover what exercise options suit your lifestyle and interests. Physiotherapy treatment can also help alleviate any acute pain symptoms you may be experiencing. Being physically active is also very important in preventing prediabetes from progressing into T2DM.
Our physiotherapists and exercise physiologist can help you create long term management strategies. They will work with you to create an exercise program appropriate to your current fitness levels.
For more information visit https://www.diabetesaustralia.com.au/.