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Benefits of Bodybuilding on Diabetes - Fight Diabetes Using Bodybuilding

Can I Benefit From Bodybuilding If I Have Diabetes?

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Benefits of the Bodybuilding Lifestyle for People with Diabetes

  1. Bodybuilding Training Improves Insulin Sensitivity and Glucose Tolerance: It seems that people with type 2 diabetes (around 90% of diabetic cases) benefit most from bodybuilding training as insulin sensitivity is increased and therefore the problem that causes it is attacked directly. People with type 1 however also benefit as most see a decreased amount in the insulin that they need to take each day to manage their glucose levels.

  2. Bodybuilding Training Increases The Need To Use Glucose For Energy: Even moderate amounts of bodybuilding training (as in 30-40 minutes three times a week) increase muscle mass. More muscle means that larger amounts of glucose are used thoughout the day and during exercise. In turn, this helps the person with type 1 as it may be possible to reduce the insulin dosage (lower glucose levels allow for a smaller insulin dose to manage the remainder). It should also be noted that the cardiovascular exercise component of bodybuilding training also helps to dispose of glucose, in addition to increasing insulin sensitivity as well.

  3. A Bodybuilding Diet Is Optimal for Controlling Blood Sugar Better: Bodybuilding requires constant blood sugar control and the best way to accomplish that is by using the correct diet. Slow released/high fiber carbs like brown rice, oatmeal and sweet potatoes combines with vegetables such as green beans and broccoli should be the main carbohydrate staples. Lean sources of protein such as chicken, turkey, egg whites, lean red meats, tuna and atlantic salmon (which is higher in fats but they are essential fats) are awesome sources of protein. Small amounts of good fats such as those founds in fish like salmon (fish oils), flaxseed oil and extra virgin olive oil help also increase insulin sensitivity and control blood sugar. I like to use a 40% carb, 40% protein, 20% good fats diet and also it is key that instead of infrequent large meals, the diet is made up of smaller more frequent meals. For more information on this subject take a look at my sample bodybuilding diets.

  4. Certain Bodybuilding Supplements Help Increase Insulin Efficiency and Glucose Disposal: Successful bodybuilding requires optimal insulin sensitivity and utilization of nutrients. Because of this, bodybuilders use supplements that optimize the insulin metabolism. A good list of supplements that accomplish that are listed below:

    • Alpha Lipoic Acid: Awesome at increasing insulin sensitivity. I always take 400 mg with post workout carbohydrate/protein shake.

    • Chromium Picolinate: Very good for increasing insulin sensitivity as well, for keeping blood sugar stable and also helps the pancreas work better. I always take 200 mg with post workout carbohydrate/protein shake or at breakfast on off days.

    • Gymnema Sylvestre Leaf Extract: Good for balancing blood sugar. I recommend 400mg three times a day.

    • Vanadyl Sulfate: Call me old school but this supplement was highly popular in the early 90s in bodybuilding circles for its properties as an insulin mimiker and its ability for better glucose utilization. It faded off sometime in the mid 90s but this supplement has proven its efficacy time after time. I continue to use it to this day taking 7.5mg with each meal that contains carbohydrates.

    • Vitamin C: Oddly enough, Vitamin C in conjunction with Vitamin E helps to lower blood glucose levels. In addition, Vitamin C also helps to protect the kidneys as well. I typically take 1000mg three times a day for the effects mentioned above and also due to its ability to reduce cortisol.


  5. The Rest Required For Optimal Bodybuilding Results Preserves Efficient Insulin Uptake: Research indicates that lack of sleep kills insulin sensitivity so much so that "in healthy young men with no risk factor, in one week, we had them in a pre-diabetic state," says researcher Dr. Eve Van Cauter when referring to a study she conducted on the effects of sleep depravation. What happens is that without sleep, the central nervous system becomes more active, something that inhibits the pancreas from producing adequate insulin.

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