Type 2 Diabetes is a condition that is caused by insulin resistance. Exercise is a common recommendation to patients as it has been proven to aid diabetes by augmenting insulin sensitivity and reducing blood glucose. Other benefits include the enhancement of blood circulation which is vital for diabetics to improve or prevent diabetic neuropathy (nerve damage in hands and feet).
So, you may ask, what type of exercise should you be doing?
Yoga is an exercise that has been progressively popular amongst all individuals including diabetics. It is an ancient practice from India and has been proven to boost flexibility, strength, and mental health. It can be likened to a combination of exercise and meditation. This is highly beneficial for diabetics as it not only provides the benefits of exercise but also the advantages of stress relief which is crucial in the control of blood glucose levels.
How Yoga Helps
Here are two ways how yoga can be healthy for diabetics:
#1 – Exercise
Physical activity helps with the maintenance or loss of weight leading to better control of blood glucose. Regular exercise also lowers blood pressure and cholesterol levels in diabetics, therefore decreasing the chance of heart-related diseases, stroke, and kidney failure—all the conditions that diabetics have a higher risk for.
#2 – Mindfulness
According to the American Journal of Health Behavior, yoga also supports the development of mindfulness. Although it is yet to be fully understood, it would appear that diabetics who are mindful have better glucose control and less likely to be obese.
Interested but afraid to try it out? Yoga has many forms and levels. It is suitable for everyone as long as you know your limits and ease into it instead of going all out on the first day. Even gentle yoga alleviates stress and facilitate weight loss.
Try watching some videos online to get an idea of what yoga is. There are also many yoga classes that offer a free first sessions or better still, enroll in the ones that take donations for charity! The only thing you will need to bring is a yoga mat. Lastly, remember to check with your doctor before you embark on this journey!
Diabetes and yoga. Diabetes.co.uk. Accessed 4/19/2017.
Try these 10 yoga poses to keep diabetes under control! TheHealthSite. Accessed 4/19/2017.
Mann D. How yoga can help manage type 2 diabetes. Everyday Health. Accessed 4/19/2014.
Diabetes and Yoga. Joslin Diabetes Center. Accessed 4/19/2017.