Doctor offers advice on running with type 1 diabetes or type 2 diabetes

New advances in diabetes treatments and blood glucose testing may allow individuals who have type 1 diabetes or type 2 diabetes to participate in activities that they otherwise would not be able to engage in due to unsafe changes in blood sugar caused by exercise.

However, many healthcare providers caution that patients with type 1 diabetes or type 2 diabetes should monitor their blood glucose levels diligently during physical activity in order to avoid hypoglycemia, which can cause a person to lose consciousness or experience adverse health effects.

In a recent article published by the Competitor Network, Lewis G. Maharam, MD, provided insight on running or engaging in high-intensity athletic events for those with type 1 diabetes or type 2 diabetes.

He explained to the news provider that some individuals with type 2 diabetes may be prescribed a new form of basal insulin injections called Lantus or Levemir.

He said that active individuals with type 2 diabetes may benefit from these diabetes treatments because a single injection is designed to provide a gradual supply of insulin over a 24-hour period. Furthermore, the health expert told the news source that after working with a physician to adjust to the new treatment, individuals may have to check their blood sugar levels only two times daily - once in the morning and again at night.

Maharam recommended that runners with type 1 diabetes or type 2 diabetes bring their own medical supplies to events.

"It is so important for diabetics to monitor their blood sugar during training runs long before the event itself. And when you get to the race, do not rely on the event’s medical team to test your sugar," he told the news organization.

The National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse suggests that individuals with type 1 diabetes avoid strenuous exercise when they have ketones in their blood or urine, since these chemicals are produced when blood glucose levels are too high and insulin levels are too low.