By Colin Kenny, Editor – Diabetes Distilled
Exercise training can potentially improve insulin sensitivity, lipid profile, vascular reactivity and cardiorespiratory fitness in people with type 2 diabetes. This position paper recognises that if we are to improve exercise adherence, the type of activity undertaken needs to be adapted to the patient’s preferences and comorbidities, be adjusted to their progress over time, and we should provide regular motivational feedback. The European Association of Preventive Cardiology recommends the careful prescription of exercise training in patients with type 2 diabetes and in those with both cardiovascular disease and diabetes.
Recent research has led to a change in our perception of the importance of physical activity in people with type 2 diabetes and resulted in the recognition that optimal exercise may vary depending on the individual. This European Association of Preventive Cardiology position paper emphasises that high-volume moderate-intensity training is safe and is proven to improve glycaemic control and cardiorespiratory fitness in type 2 diabetes patients who also have cardiac comorbidity.
The paper also highlights that high-intensity interval training is a promising strategy for improving cardiorespiratory fitness, glycaemic control and body composition, as well as cardiac function. High-volume resistance training, combined with aerobic exercise training, may add to improvements in glycaemic control and body composition. The Association recommends that in type 2 diabetes patients with cardiac comorbidities, exercise programmes be adjusted to create individual training targets and to address potential training barriers identified after careful initial evaluation. It also recommendsregular motivational feedback as being crucial to adherence.
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