I’m a type 1 diabetic. I need to work on my stomach. Should I eat a meal before attempting this or wait till I finish then eat my meal?
I will have to rely on the famous phrase, “It depends.” When you’ve eaten last, what you ate, your last insulin dose and type, your current blood glucose level, and the expected walk/gym exercise intensity and duration will all dictate the best timing of your meal. Adding exercise to an otherwise presently stable day will draw energy, increase insulin sensitivity and promote blood sugar uptake into cells. Because diabetes mellitus type 1 responses to exercise include blood sugar lows, you should take proper precautions and be prepared to treat hypoglycemia.
Start recording your blood sugars before, during and after exercise so that you can better predict when you need a snack. Share your record with your endocrinologist (or healthcare professional) whose guidance regarding blood sugar management you should follow. You can also receive personalized medical nutrition therapy from a Dietitian who’s also a Certified Diabetes Educator for the exact volume and timing of your pre/post workout meals.
– Debbie J., MS, RD
This article should not replace any exercise program or restrictions, any dietary supplements or restrictions, or any other medical recommendations from your primary care physician. Before starting any exercise program or diet, make sure it is approved by your doctor.
Some questions have been edited for length and/or clarity.