Thursday, July 12, 2018

Prediabetes - Increase Your Activity Level

Note that the title of this post is not "exercise," it's "increase your activity level."

If you have prediabetes, increasing your activity level burns sugar. So does exercise. But who wants to exercise when you can burn sugar by doing everyday activities. A few examples are as follows:
  • Get off the couch and move, even if it's to the kitchen to fill up your water bottle or get a cup of green tea.
  • Walk the dog. Quicken the pace and walk a little longer every day.
  • Walk around your neighborhood (if it's safe to do so). Quicken the pace and walk a little longer every day.
  • Garden if you like it. Raking, weeding, spreading mulch, and planting vegetables or flowers will all burn sugar.
  • Got a lot of errands to run? No problem. Group them into one day when you can shop for groceries, go to the bank, or go to doctor's appointments. Walk if you can. If that's not possible, forget about finding a parking space near the door of the bank or the store. Park as far away as you can.
  • If you work at a desk, get up and walk at least once an hour. Walk on your lunch break.

According to a Consumer Reports article by Sally Wadyka,
The University of Warwick study compared people with at least one sign of metabolic syndrome—which is a group of risk factors (high blood pressure, fat around the waist, high blood sugar, and high triglycerides and cholesterol) that lead to heart disease—to those with no risk factors. They found that those who got the least activity had the most risk factors, and those who walked the most—accumulating at least 15,000 steps per day—had healthy BMIs, smaller waists, lower cholesterol and blood pressure, and better blood sugar control.
Measuring Your Progress

So, you decided to increase your activity level. How do you know if you are making progress? One of the easiest ways is to measure steps. Get a simple pedometer. Keep it on your person and measure your steps.

I have a smartwatch that measures steps, heart rate, and sleep cycles. It also alerts me to text messages and phone calls. I started out with 7,500 steps per day and am working toward 10,000 steps per day.  At the right are my steps today.

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