High Intensity Exercise Can Help Type 2 Diabetes

People with type 2 diabetes can benefit from high intensity intermittent exercise training (HIIT), according to a new study published in Diabetologia.

HIIT training - which involves alternating intense bursts of physical activity with periods of rest - was found to improve heart structure and help with diabetes control in a 23-person study funded by the National Institute for Health Research.

While researchers already know that exercise can drastically improve diabetes outcomes, the new study suggests that short periods of intense physical activity can benefit both heart health and diabetes control.

"This study demonstrates, for the first time, that exercise can begin to reverse some of the early cardiac changes that are commonly found in people with type 2 diabetes," the study authors wrote.

Diabetes and heart health

According to a statement released about the study, heart disease is the number one cause of death and complications for people with type 2 diabetes. Moreover, cardiovascular problems tend to happen early in diabetes patients, which can cause lasting changes to the structure and overall function of the heart.

Researchers concluded that exercise doesn't have to be continuous in order for it to be beneficial for diabetes patients.

"Repeated short bouts of higher intensity exercise give strong benefits to the heart," they wrote. "Getting more physically active is, quite literally, at the heart of good diabetes control."

Source: EurekAlert!

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