Diet and Exercise for Diabetes: Must Do Tips

Diet and exercise for diabetes is your #1 defense against this condition. It is empowering to know that type 2 diabetes can be minimized or reversed by healthy lifestyle choices. The saddest part is while genetics may play some role in determining who is afflicted with diabetes, studies show that the majority of cases of diabetes cases can be attributed to inactivity1 or poor diet.2

diet exercise diabeticDiabetes responds very, very well for many people to healthy eating and exercise!

With type 2 diabetes, either the body does not produce enough insulin or the cells ignore the insulin, which is crucial for the body to be able to use glucose for energy. The recommendations I make for my clients for good health and weight control come from the American Diabetes Association for prevention and treatment. 

Diet and Exercise for Diabetes: Your Mission

  • Consume a high fiber, low-fat diet that consists of lots of vegetables, fruits, whole grain foods, fish, lean meats, dried beans, non-fat dairy, unsaturated fats.
  • Minimize or avoid refined foods, like snacks and desserts high in fat and sugar.
  • Watch food portion sizes and maintain a healthy weight.
  • Exercise 30 to 60 or more minutes per day.
diet exercise diabetesDiabetes is a condition in which diet and exercise are more powerful than for just about any other! How cool!

What You Stand to Gain

The benefits of exercise in preventing or treating diabetes are numerous and include:

  • Improved blood glucose.
  • Losing weight.
  • Reduced stress which has a positive effect on glucose levels.
  • Improved efficiency of insulin so you get more out of the way your body uses it.

In some people, proper diet and exercise allows them to control diabetes without use of medication! Simply amazing! I know so many formerly sedentary people who didn't eat so well and who adopted a healthy lifestyle, only to find that their diabetes markers changed for the bettter! It's totally possible - and certainly worth trying. Always talk to your doctor before changing your medication doses or frequency.

I have had many Home Bodies clients who were in the pre-diabetic category who were able to reverse the condition with my programs, too! Catching it while it's still pre-diabetes is the best approach, so always check in with your yearly physical, even if you are feeling well.


1 Frank W. Booth, Ph.D.,1 Christian K. Roberts, Ph.D.,2 and Matthew J. Laye, Ph.D. Lack of exercise is a major cause of chronic diseases. Compr Physiol. 2012 Apr; 2(2): 1143–1211. doi: 10.1002/cphy.c110025

2 Waqas Sami, Tahir Ansari, Nadeem Shafique Butt and Mohd Rashid Ab Hamid1. Effect of diet on type 2 diabetes mellitus: A review. Int J Health Sci (Qassim). 2017 Apr-Jun; 11(2): 65–71. PMCID: PMC5426415 PMID: 28539866 

Managing Diabetes with a Trainer/Nutritionist's Help

diet and exercise for diabetes

Using a certified nutritionist who is also a personal trainer can pack a one-two punch when it comes to learning the best diet and exercise for diabetes. Someone who can personalize the guidance just for you and be able to look at the whole picture is truly invaluable. Check out our Certified Nutritionist Services! You can also request a Price Quote for Personal Training here.

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