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Weight Training May be Key to Diabetic Diet, Study Finds

Whitney | August 15th, 2012

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A new study suggests that the most effective weight loss program for diabetics is one that incorporates weight training on a regular basis, whether performed alone or in combination with aerobic activity. The study found that individuals who spend time in the weight room every week could reduce their type II diabetes risk by a significant amount.

Study: Add weights to your diabetic diet

The study, published in the Archives of Internal Medicine, found men who did five 30-minute weight training sessions a week could reduce type II diabetes risk by 34 percent. Those who combined resistance training with regular aerobic exercise could cut their risk by 59 percent. This amount was higher than aerobic activity (150 minutes weekly) alone, which decreased risk by 52 percent.

The study looked at more than 32,000 men who participated in the Health Professionals Follow-Up Study between 1990 and 2008. During that time, 2,278 new cases of type II diabetes were reported among the test subjects. While the researchers in this study solely looked at men, they believe the same benefits will hold true for women in search of an effective diabetic diet and exercise program.

Why weight training bolsters diet plans for diabetics

Weight training builds lean muscle mass, a process improves the sensitivity of insulin receptors, allowing muscles to process glucose more efficiently. Benefits are seen almost immediately and may continue for days afterward. Even 10 minutes of daily resistance training can reap some benefit, although longer sessions are more beneficial.

Another study published in the same journal showed that even after a person is diagnosed with diabetes, regular exercise as part of a diabetes diet for weight loss can reduce the risk of cardiovascular complications that often accompany the disease.

Patients who have been diagnosed with type II diabetes, as well as those who are at higher risk for the disease, can benefit from an effective weight loss program for diabetics that incorporates weight training exercises.

Best diet for diabetes? Consult a doctor

Another critical factor is the involvement of an experienced physician who can customize a weight loss program to each unique patient’s specific needs and offer ongoing support to ensure goals are met. One physician-guided weight loss program that’s been proven by research published in the American Journal of Medicine to help people lose an average of 11.1% of their body weight in 12 weeks, is offered at The Center for Medical Weight Loss.

“We see diabetic patients all the time who lose weight and no longer need insulin,” says Dr. Michael Kaplan, founder of The Center for Medical Weight Loss, which has supervised the dieting of thousands of people who have successfully lost weight. “When patients lose 5% – 10% of their body weight, it is a given that they will reduce their blood sugar significantly; many no longer need medication.”

There are 450 centers located across the country. If you’re looking for information on a healthy diabetic diet, enter your zip code at the right to see if there is one in your area. Introductory offers are available for first-time clients at select centers.