March 29, 2017

Diabetes & Exercise – New Guidelines Say Physical Activity Impacts Diabetes Management

By Jaime Taylor

Late last year, the American Diabetes Association (ADA) issued new exercise guidelines for people diagnosed with Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes.

“New ADA recommendations are safe and excellent guidelines for diabetes patients to follow when regulating blood sugar in addition to previously recommended regular exercise and diet management,” said Whitney Garren, PA-C, with Mission Vista Family Health.

The new guidelines call for 3 or more minutes of light activity, every 30 minutes during prolonged sedentary activities for better blood sugar management. Prolonged sitting such as time at a computer, watching TV or sitting in a meeting has a negative impact on preventing and/or managing health problems, including diabetes. Previous recommendations were for physical movement every 90 minutes of sedentary time.

Movements that emphasize flexibility, aerobic activity, strength training and balance have also been encouraged for older adults with Type 2 diabetes.

The American Diabetes Association recommends 3 minutes or more of light activity every 30 minutes to improve glucose management. Try these easy ways to get moving:

  • Leg lifts or extensions
  • Walking or walking in place
  • Overhead arm stretches
  • Side lunges
  • Torso twists

Whitney Garren, PA-C, is with Mission Vista Family Health. (828) 687-8647

To learn more about diabetes support at Mission Health, call (828) 213-4700. To find a Mission primary care provider who’s best for you, call (828) 213-3222 or request an appointment at