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Exercise and Diabetes: What to Eat Before and After Your Workout

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Whether you have type 1 or type 2 diabetes, getting enough exercise is crucial for improving insulin resistance and maintaining overall health.

For people with diabetes, it’s not as simple as suiting up and hitting the gym. You need to think about your blood sugar both before and after a workout. To prevent extreme highs or lows, make sure you’re eating properly and fueling your body at the right times, with the right foods.

If Your Blood Sugar Is Low

Blood glucose levels may vary depending on what type of exercise you’re doing, how long you’re doing it for, and how hard you’re working.

Some people might experience a drop in blood sugar levels during or after exercise, so it’s important to check your insulin levels before, during and after a workout. If your levels are low before exercise, the American Diabetes Association recommends having a small carbohydrate snack (about 15 grams) to raise your blood sugar – especially if you will be exercising longer than 30 minutes. You might also need to lower your insulin dosage.

Also, be sure to bring along a carbohydrate food or drink that can raise your blood sugar if necessary.

If Your Blood Sugar Is High