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Aiming for an Ideal Exercise Blood Glucose

Dr. Sheri Colberg on Avoid Weight Gain from Insulin Use and Treating Lows

By Sheri R. Colberg, PhD, FACSM

There is no official ideal blood glucose range to start with and maintain during physical activity, but we do know that being too low negatively impacts performance, as does being too high. As for what blood glucose target or range most athletes aim for, it depends on a number of factors, including the type, intensity, and duration of their activity. A consensus statement about exercise and type 1 diabetes published in The Lancet in 2017 suggested that a reasonable target for most people doing aerobic exercise lasting up to an hour is 126 to 180 mg/dL (7.0 to 10.0 mmol/L), only aiming higher for added protection against lows in some situations.

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