Losing weight will help prevent the possibility of getting Diabetes. The Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP) shows that people with impaired glucose tolerance (IGT) who are losing 10-15 pounds reduce their risk of getting type 2 diabetes by more than 50%. (Impaired glucose tolerance means your body is not taking the glucose out of your blood as efficiently as it should.) If you are older than 60, the DPP found that losing 10-15 pounds reduced the risk of diabetes by 71%. Good news —these effects were the same for men, women, and all minority groups.
In addition, one-third of the people who lost the weight and exercised at least 150 minutes per week (30 minutes five times a week) improved their blood- sugar levels from IGT to normal. So, losing weight not only helps prevent diabetes, it also helps bring elevated blood-sugar levels back to normal!
The Finnish Diabetes Prevention study had similar results. A weight loss of 11% of body weight (more than 15 pounds) was associated with more than an 80% reduced risk of getting type 2 diabetes. These results strongly suggest that the more weight you lose, the better chance you have of preventing type 2 diabetes.
Does Exercise Help Prevent Diabetes?
Most of the people losing weight chose brisk walking, and others started swimming or biking. The average activity level per week was 208 minutes in the first year and 189 minutes per week at the end of the three-year study. Another study in China showed that increasing physical activity can reduce the risk of develpoing diabetes by 46%. Participants in the is study were asked to increase their exercises level by two units a day for those over 50 who had no problems with heart disease or arthritis. The average activity level was four units per day. The clear message is that activity alone-even without weight loss-is a powerful diabetes prevention strategy.
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