Get Off Your Lazy Butt! 17 Practical Exercise Tips to Control Diabetes

Get Off Your Lazy Butt!  17 Practical Exercise Tips to Control Diabetes

Diabetes Costs $247 Billion.  $247 Billion Is a Large Number

So large in fact, that I’m having trouble wrapping my head around it.

This number – almost one quarter of a trillion dollars – is the estimated cost of diabetes in the year 2012.  This includes cost of diagnosis and treatment of type 1 and type 2 diabetes, or the single year “diabetes economic burden.”

It is a number so large, it defies belief.

Put in to context, $247 billion dollars means this:

  1. Start with $1000.  Put it in a pile on your desk.  Now make 1000 of those piles.  That’s $1 million.

  2. Now repeat this process 10 times.  That’s $10 million.

  3. Take that money, put it in a storage container, then fill 99 more storage containers in the same way.  Now you have $1 billion.

  4. Take that money, fill a 747 with it, then fill 247 other jumbo jets.  Congrats, you now have $247 billion.

It wasn’t until I went to the 2013 American Diabetes Conference in Chicago, Il this past month that I began to realize just how big of a monster diabetes has become.  As I walked past the registration desk, I couldn’t help but notice a pharmaceutical product exhibition that overtook a floor the size of two football fields.  The floor looked like this:

As I walked past product vendors, I couldn’t help but think to myself: Is all this necessary?

As a diabetic that has managed to minimize insulin usage through diet and exercise alone, it’s difficult to wade through a sea of medical equipment without thinking whether other diabetics could also achieve the same outcome using diet and exercise instead of a litany of pharmaceutical drugs.

What percentage of diabetics perform regular exercise?

The answer to this question is unfortunate.  Less than 40% of all diabetics perform regular exercise and watch their diet.  Most diabetics know it’s good for them, but still refuse to do it.  Read the article Most Diabetics Refuse to Exercise.  It amazes me how lazy our society has become.

What percentage of diabetics eat a diet low in fat and refined carbohydrates?

Even worse, less than 20% of diabetics eat a diet low in fat and refined carbohydrates, two dietary components that encourage the development of insulin resistance.

The problem is that most people want a magic pill, a pill that can be taken once a day that mimics the effect of healthy lifestyle choices.  In fact, many of the pharmaceutical companies pictured above are attempting to develop such drugs.  Just think of how much money could be made from such a therapy.

So what am I supposed to do?

So the verdict is out.  Intellectually, we know that a healthy diet and frequent exercise can treat and even prevent a complicated condition like diabetes.  But that information isn’t enough.  Instead we create an industry with a plethora of goods and services, then prolong the treatment of the disease, all for the sake of profit.

If you want to give your body an early Christmas present, here are a few ideas:

Ride a bike.

Walk across your neighborhood.  And back.

Go on a run.

Swim 10 laps.

Stand up, sit down, repeat 100 times.

Take your dog on a walk.  Take your cat on a walk.  Take your hamster on a walk.

Chase your kid around the park. 

Chase someone else’s kid around the park.

Put 2 gallons of water in a stroller, push that around the block.  Repeat 5 times.

Clean the kitchen floor.  Clean the bathroom floor. 

Clean an already clean floor.

Take out the trash.  Then put it back.  Repeat 5 times.

The truth is, it doesn’t matter what you do. 

Just move.  Don’t be lazy.

Move because you love it. 

Move because you need it. 

Move because you’re worth it.

Photo credit: noahwesley / Foter.com / CC BY-NC-SA

About The Author

Cyrus Khambatta

Diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at the age of 22, I have spent over a decade learning the fundamentals of nutrition at the doctorate level. My goal is to share my knowledge of practical nutrition and fitness with people with prediabetes, type 1 and type 2 diabetes. Diabetes is an OPPORTUNITY to attain excellent health. Reversing the effects of insulin resistance can be a fun and enjoyable process if the right system is in place. That's why I've spent over 10 years developing a rock solid system that can minimize blood glucose variability and insulin resistance.

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