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Exercise for People with Chronic Medical Conditions or Disabilities 


If you are diabetic, it is even more important to choose an exercise that is safe. You should warm up and cool down for about 5-10 minutes; this will help your body adjust so you’re not rushing into anything or pull a muscle Always stretch your muscles before beginning your exercise, and drink water, before, during, and after you exercise. Do not exercise in very cold or very hot weather. 

You should check your blood sugar each time before exercise; if your blood sugar is too high, you should not do any exercise until it comes down. Exercise can lower blood sugar levels up to 24 hours. If it is too low, you may need to have a snack before starting.

To learn when and how much to snack, use this chart:

 How Long and Hard  You Plan to Exercise  Exercise Examples  If Blood Sugar Is:             Then Eat This  Amount of Snacks

 30 minutes or less

 Easy exercise

 Walking or easy biking

  Less than 100  


 180 or more

 2 portions

 1 portion

 no snack needed

 About 1 hour

 A little harder exercise

 Tennis, swimming,
 harder biking

 Less than 100


 180 or more

 2 portions of snack  plus some protein

 1 portion of snack plus  some protein

 1 portion of snack

 2 hours or more

 Hard exercise

 Football, hockey,
 basketball, hard biking,  hard swimming,  running

 Less than 100






 180 or more

 Do not exercise until  blood sugar is over  100. Take 1 portion of  snack and retest in 15  min.

 Start with 2 portions of  snack and some  protein.

 Test blood sugar each  hour. Eat at least 1  portion of snack every  hour

**Always check with your doctor before starting an exercise program. Your doctor may want to check your heart, blood pressure, eye status. He/she can then tell you what types of exercise are best for you.

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Health and Wellness Tip

Laugh every day.  It can release endorphins, the healing hormones, and act as the body’s natural pain killer.  Rent a funny movie or call a friend that makes you laugh.  This can lower your blood pressure and boost your immune system.