PEOPLE living with type 2 diabetes (T2D) and related illness are being encouraged to rediscover the joy of movement.

“While diabetes is an enormous burden on our community, the welcome news is that exercise really is one effective treatment for this chronic disease and can play a vital role in prevention too,” Logan Healthy Living program manager and exercise physiologist Harmonee Dove said.

May 23-29 is Exercise Right Week, and Logan has the fifth highest rate of insulin-treated T2D in the nation, with some areas within the region recording a diabetes death rate nearly twice the national average.

Ms Dove says hospitalisations due to T2D complications may be reduced by introducing exercise as a key component of a diabetes treatment plan.

She says if we consider exercise as medicine, there is a specific prescription required for different conditions. For T2D cases, aerobic and resistance exercise are key.

“Exercise training improves glycaemic control, body composition, cardiorespiratory fitness, physical functions, and wellbeing, making exercise a core component to lifestyle management interventions,” she says.

While people generally accept exercise is good for them, it’s not quite as simple to determine exactly what type of exercise is right for us, and for how long and how often.”

Choosing the right health care provider to give this advice is important. Exercise physiologists are the leaders in exercise prescription, and they individualise their approach for each client’s specific needs.

Ms Dove works with diabetes clients every day, helping them determine what movement works for them and how they might incorporate this into their everyday lives.

“Traditional exercise can be intimidating for many people, particularly those who have been
discouraged by mobility issues and ill health because of diabetes,” she says.

“An ideal exercise program combines your preferences and considers your current level of fitness and any conditions you have.”

There are opportunities for movement all around us, from the gym to the washing, to community
physical activity groups, to playing with the kids.

The idea is that we can take the prescription for diabetes, 30 minutes of moderate intensity aerobic exercise a day, plus two days per week resistance training and turn that into something that you can achieve and even enjoy,” Ms Dove says.

While Exercise Right Week is an excellent reminder to move more, Ms Dove encourages her clients to remain consistent all year round.

“It’s so important to remember that movement can be as unique as you are. Get support, start small and keep going,” she says.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.