Study calls for ‘type 2 exercise prescriptions’
People with type 2 diabetes should be given exercise “prescriptions” that are adapted to the individual and specify the type, duration, intensity and frequency of workouts, according to a new review.
Regular exercise can help improve blood sugar control, blood pressure, insulin sensitivity and cholesterol levels, but despite this not everyone with type 2 diabetes participate, researchers said.
Lead author Dr Romeu Mendes of the Public Health Unit, ACES Douro I—Marao e Douro Norte in Vila Real, Portugal, said: “Exercise and physical activity can help to control type 2 diabetes. There are many successful case-studies of patients who reversed metabolic dysfunction only with lifestyle strategies (exercise plus diet).
“Diabetes is a chronic disease and must be managed for life. Regular exercise and a healthy nutritional pattern are the basis of the treatment.”
The researchers looked at many published recommendations or guidelines which have been issued by international scientific organisations in the field of diabetology, endocrinology, cardiology, public health and sports medicine.
They included 11 publications from institutions like the European Association for the Study of Diabetes, American Diabetes Association, Francophone Diabetes Society and Swedish National Institute of Health.
All the documents agreed that 150 minutes of moderate to vigorous aerobic exercise per week would hugely benefit people with type 2 diabetes.
Aerobic exercise can include brisk walking, running, cycling, swimming or other activities, and resistance exercise should target large muscle groups with machines or free weights.
Speaking to Reuters news agency, Dr Mendes said that advising people to exercise was not enough and prescriptions should be issued with specific information on what they should be doing and when.
The research was published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine.