January 22, 2014

Ladies Make it Tight to Keep it Right

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women_preventionGym slang aside, a new study finds that the best prevention for Type 2 diabetes for women may be to build muscle. The study was published in PLoS Medicine.

We know that exercise can improve health for men. However, this has been undocumented for women. Common sense would say it’s a given but with all things in science and law, we need proof. Thanks to the nearly 100,000 women followed in the study, now we have proof.

So the bottom-line for the ladies is that stretching and weight-lifting are associated with lower incidence of T2D. The aforementioned include yoga. Who would imagine that the downward dog could keep glucose low, too?

“The findings from our study also suggest that incorporating muscle-strengthening and conditioning activities with aerobic activity according to the current recommendation for physical activity [from  health authorities for 150 minutes a week] provides substantial benefit for type 2 diabetes prevention in women,” according to the researchers.

Here’s the balanced approach for the ladies to achieving glucose Zen: 2.5 hours a week of aerobic activity and at least 1 hour a week of muscle-strengthening exercise. These women were a third as likely to develop diabetes.

Examples of cardio activity include the things you cannot do while carrying on a conversation. Walking briskly, jogging, and cycling are a few examples of these 2.5 hour exercises. The other group of strength and conditioning exercises include: resistance training, yoga and lifting free weights.

Sad but true, aging is associated with loss of lean body mass. Building muscles may help to counteract that necessary evil.  From a personal standpoint, I’ve seen that exercise of all types improves insulin sensitivity and improves the way my body uses glucose.

Visit Your Diabetes Health for more resources about health.