Diabetes is an illness in which the body does not use glucose properly. Glucose is a fuel that is carried by the blood to the body's cells and requires insulin to allow it to pass into these cells. In a diabetic person the body doesn't produce enough insulin or doesn't respond effectively to the insulin that is present. As a result, the glucose stays in the blood stream and the level becomes too high for the body to handle. There are two main types of diabetes.
Type 1 diabetes occurs when the body's immune system, partly or wholly, destroys the cells in the pancreas that produce insulin. The body is unable to produce insulin and requires insulin injections to survive.
Type 2 diabetes occurs when the insulin is produced but the cells in the body don't allow the insulin to work. The cells are unable to accept blood glucose.
Excess glucose in the bloodstream damages blood vessels and nerves in the body and can result in reduced blood flow, increased chance of infections, and lengthens wound healing time. Long-term damage can result in blindness, kidney failure, heart disease, and amputation of limbs.
Diabetes can result from inheritance, an unhealthy diet high in sugar, obesity, or a combination of a bad diet and a lack of exercise.
- Use an extensive warm up and cool down period to adjust the body to exercise and then to adjust back to resting levels.
- Do not exercise for periods greater than forty-five minutes as it significantly increases the chances of hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar.
- Avoid exercising during periods of peak insulin activity.
- Be aware that the muscle the insulin was injected into may be swollen or tender. Exercising that muscle may be painful.
- Be careful of exercises performed above the head as this increases blood pressure and diabetes can result in the onset of cardiovascular problems.
- Monitor blood glucose levels frequently when starting an exercise program to learn how your body handles it.
- Always carry a quick fix of sugar in case of an emergency. Jelly beans are easy to carry and very effective.
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