Brought to you by the Endocrine Society
D.A.I.L.Y. is a joint initiative of the Endocrine Society and its Hormone Health Network.
arrow left
Goal 4 | Physical Activity | 1 of 4
Links Between Physical Activity and Diabetes
arrow right

Have you been told that you need to lose weight by a healthcare professional?

“I knew I needed to, and I'm glad I'm doing it.”

Overweight and obesity are common problems among people with diabetes, and for Americans in general. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, two-thirds of Americans are overweight and one-third is obese. For many, losing weight is part of their goal in managing diabetes.

How do you know if you're overweight or obese? Healthcare providers rely on the body-mass index (BMI) scale. The BMI scale assesses your weight in relation to your height. The formula for adults is: Your weight divided by the square of your height times 703.

You can easily determine your BMI by using a BMI calculator.

People with a BMI of 25 to 29.9 are considered overweight. A BMI of more than 30 is considered obese. Watch video on "Obesity" in Goal 3.

Losing weight carries with it important health benefits. By losing just 5 to 10% of your body weight, you reduce your risks for such major conditions as coronary heart disease and high blood pressure, and lower your blood glucose levels. You also enjoy more energy to get things done, more confidence, and greater physical mobility.

To lose weight, you must burn more calories than you take in through the foods you eat and beverages you drink. Consider that 1 pound is equivalent to 3,500 calories. So if your goal is to lose 1 to 2 pounds per week, you need to cut your calorie balance by 500-1,000 calories per day.

Talk with your healthcare provider about the type and amount of physical activity that is best for you. In general, you want to get 30 minutes per day most days of the week of moderate-intensity exercise, for a total of 150 minutes per week, to maintain a healthy weight. Losing weight—and keeping it off—usually requires more physical activity: About 60 to 90 minutes per day, most days of the week. But if you're just starting out, aim for 10 minutes per day at first and gradually build up to your goal.

video


But you don't have to get it all at once. You can break it down into 10-minute segments. And there are "little" things you can do to get more physical activity into your day. Consider:

  • Walking instead of driving for short trips
  • Getting off the bus or subway one stop early and walking the rest of the way
  • Parking farther away from your destination and walking there
  • Taking the stairs instead of the elevator

It helps to keep track of your weight as you go so you can assess how you're doing. You can print out and use the weight tracker on this page to do just that. Make several copies before you start filling it out.

weight tracker

Download My Weight Tracker

woman doing situps

So what does a safe weight loss plan look like?

The most successful weight loss plans include changes to diet (generally eating less, but eating more nutritious food at the same time) and physical activity (getting more into your day) together. Your healthcare provider will work with you to improve your diet and level of physical activity.

Generally, you want to aim to lose 1/2 to 2 pounds per week. That means making gradual changes, sticking with your plan, and getting right back on it if you slip up. And one of those gradual changes should be getting more physical activity into your life.

exercise to better BMI

Click to download pdf!

“I know it's something I've got to do for my health.”

It's true, losing weight isn't easy.

But according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the health risks associated with being overweight or obese are significant. They include:

  • All causes of death (mortality)
  • High blood pressure (Hypertension)
  • High LDL cholesterol, low HDL cholesterol, or high levels of triglycerides (Dyslipidemia)
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Coronary heart disease
  • Stroke
  • Gallbladder disease
  • Osteoarthritis (a breakdown of cartilage and bone within a joint)
  • Sleep apnea and breathing problems
  • Chronic inflammation and increased oxidative stress
  • Some cancers (endometrial, breast, colon, kidney, gallbladder, and liver)
  • Low quality of life
  • Mental illness such as clinical depression, anxiety, and other mental disorders
  • Body pain and difficulty with physical functioning

Losing weight carries with it important health benefits. By losing just 5 to 10% of your body weight, you reduce your risks for such major conditions as coronary heart disease and high blood pressure, and lower your blood glucose levels. You also enjoy more energy to get things done, more confidence, and greater physical mobility.

Overweight and obesity are common problems among people with diabetes, and for Americans in general. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, two-thirds of Americans are overweight and one-third is obese. For many, losing weight is part of their goal in managing diabetes.

How do you know if you're overweight or obese? Healthcare providers rely on the body-mass index (BMI) scale. The BMI scale assesses your weight in relation to your height. The formula for adults is: Your weight divided by the square of your height times 703.

You can easily determine your BMI by using a BMI calculator.

People with a BMI of 25 to 29.9 are considered overweight. A BMI of more than 30 is considered obese. Watch video on "Obesity" in Goal 3.

To lose weight, you must burn more calories than you take in through the foods you eat and beverages you drink. Consider that 1 pound is equivalent to 3,500 calories. So if your goal is to lose 1 to 2 pounds per week, you need to cut your calorie balance by 500-1,000 calories per day.

video


Talk with your healthcare provider about the type and amount of physical activity that is best for you. In general, you want to get 30 minutes per day most days of the week of moderate-intensity exercise, for a total of 150 minutes per week, to maintain a healthy weight. Losing weight—and keeping it off—usually requires more physical activity: About 60 to 90 minutes per day, most days of the week. But if you're just starting out, aim for 10 minutes per day at first and gradually build up to your goal.

It's hard to get started, but once you get started, many people have days when they slip and perhaps eat more than intended, or didn't get the exercise they hoped to, or both.

But you don't have to get it all at once. You can break it down into 10-minute segments. And there are "little" things you can do to get more physical activity into your day. Consider:

  • Walking instead of driving for short trips
  • Getting off the bus or subway one stop early and walking the rest of the way
  • Parking farther away from your destination and walking there
  • Taking the stairs instead of the elevator

It helps to keep track of your weight as you go so you can assess how you're doing. You can print out and use the weight tracker on this page to do just that. Make several copies before you start filling it out.

weight tracker

Download My Weight Tracker

overweight girl

So what does a safe weight loss plan look like?

The most successful weight loss plans include changes to diet (generally eating less, but eating more nutritious food at the same time) and physical activity (getting more into your day) together. Your healthcare provider will work with you to improve your diet and level of physical activity.

Generally, you want to aim to lose 1/2 to 2 pounds per week. That means making gradual changes, sticking with your plan, and getting right back on it if you slip up. And one of those gradual changes should be getting more physical activity into your life.

exercise to better BMI

Click to download pdf!

“It's important that I lose some pounds.”

Good for you! You're moving in the right direction—to get moving in order to better your overall health!

Overweight and obesity are common problems among people with diabetes, and for Americans in general. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, two-thirds of Americans are overweight and one-third is obese. For many, losing weight is part of their goal in managing diabetes.

How do you know if you're overweight or obese? Healthcare providers rely on the body-mass index (BMI) scale. The BMI scale assesses your weight in relation to your height. The formula for adults is: Your weight divided by the square of your height times 703.

You can easily determine your BMI by using a BMI calculator.

People with a BMI of 25 to 29.9 are considered overweight. A BMI of more than 30 is considered obese. Watch video on "Obesity" in Goal 3.

Losing weight carries with it important health benefits. By losing just 5 to 10% of your body weight, you reduce your risks for such major conditions as coronary heart disease and high blood pressure, and lower your blood glucose levels. You also enjoy more energy to get things done, more confidence, and greater physical mobility.

To lose weight, you must burn more calories than you take in through the foods you eat and beverages you drink. Consider that 1 pound is equivalent to 3,500 calories. So if your goal is to lose 1 to 2 pounds per week, you need to cut your calorie balance by 500-1,000 calories per day.

video


Talk with your healthcare provider about the type and amount of physical activity that is best for you. In general, you want to get 30 minutes per day most days of the week of moderate-intensity exercise, for a total of 150 minutes per week, to maintain a healthy weight. Losing weight—and keeping it off—usually requires more physical activity: About 60 to 90 minutes per day, most days of the week. But if you're just starting out, aim for 10 minutes per day at first and gradually build up to your goal.

But you don't have to get it all at once. You can break it down into 10-minute segments. And there are "little" things you can do to get more physical activity into your day. Consider:

  • Walking instead of driving for short trips
  • Getting off the bus or subway one stop early and walking the rest of the way
  • Parking farther away from your destination and walking there
  • Taking the stairs instead of the elevator

It helps to keep track of your weight as you go so you can assess how you're doing. You can print out and use the weight tracker on this page to do just that. Make several copies before you start filling it out.

weight tracker

Download My Weight Tracker

woman with barbells

So what does a safe weight loss plan look like?

The most successful weight loss plans include changes to diet (generally eating less, but eating more nutritious food at the same time) and physical activity (getting more into your day) together. Your healthcare provider will work with you to improve your diet and level of physical activity.

Generally, you want to aim to lose 1/2 to 2 pounds per week. That means making gradual changes, sticking with your plan, and getting right back on it if you slip up. And one of those gradual changes should be getting more physical activity into your life.

exercise to better BMI

Click to download pdf!

“I'm at my target weight.”

If your weight falls within a healthy range, you don't need to lose weight. How do you know if you're overweight or obese? Healthcare providers rely on the body-mass index (BMI) scale. The BMI scale assesses your weight in relation to your height. The formula for adults is: Your weight divided by the square of your height times 703.

You can easily determine your BMI by using a BMI calculator.

People with a BMI of 25 to 29.9 are considered overweight. A BMI of more than 30 is considered obese. Watch video on "Obesity" in Goal 3. If your BMI falls within the overweight or obese ranges, you probably need to lose weight. Talk to your healthcare provider about your weight, whether you need to lose some weight, and what the best methods for doing so are.

Overweight and obesity are common problems among people with diabetes, and for Americans in general. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, two-thirds of Americans are overweight and one-third is obese. For many, losing weight is part of their goal in managing diabetes.

Losing weight carries with it important health benefits. By losing just 5 to 10% of your body weight, you reduce your risks for such major conditions as coronary heart disease and high blood pressure, and lower your blood glucose levels. You also enjoy more energy to get things done, more confidence, and greater physical mobility.

To lose weight, you must burn more calories than you take in through the foods you eat and beverages you drink. Consider that 1 pound is equivalent to 3,500 calories. So if your goal is to lose 1 to 2 pounds per week, you need to cut your calorie balance by 500-1,000 calories per day.

So what does a safe weight loss plan look like? The most successful weight loss plans include changes to diet (generally eating less, but eating more nutritious food at the same time) and physical activity (getting more into your day) together. Your healthcare provider will work with you to improve your diet and level of physical activity.

Generally, you want to aim to lose 1/2 to 2 pounds per week. That means making gradual changes, sticking with your plan, and getting right back on it if you slip up. And one of those gradual changes should be getting more physical activity into your life.

video


Talk with your healthcare provider about the type and amount of physical activity that is best for you. In general, you want to get 30 minutes per day most days of the week of moderate-intensity exercise, for a total of 150 minutes per week, to maintain a healthy weight. Losing weight—and keeping it off—usually requires more physical activity: About 60 to 90 minutes per day, most days of the week. But if you're just starting out, aim for 10 minutes per day at first and gradually build up to your goal.

But you don't have to get it all at once. You can break it down into 10-minute segments. And there are "little" things you can do to get more physical activity into your day. Consider:

  • Walking instead of driving for short trips
  • Getting off the bus or subway one stop early and walking the rest of the way
  • Parking farther away from your destination and walking there
  • Taking the stairs instead of the elevator

It helps to keep track of your weight as you go so you can assess how you're doing. You can print out and use the weight tracker on this page to do just that. Make several copies before you start filling it out.

weight tracker

Download My Weight Tracker

target weight

So what does a safe weight loss plan look like?

The most successful weight loss plans include changes to diet (generally eating less, but eating more nutritious food at the same time) and physical activity (getting more into your day) together. Your healthcare provider will work with you to improve your diet and level of physical activity.

Generally, you want to aim to lose 1/2 to 2 pounds per week. That means making gradual changes, sticking with your plan, and getting right back on it if you slip up. And one of those gradual changes should be getting more physical activity into your life.

exercise to better BMI

Click to download pdf!