Help Type 2 Diabetes Using Video Games


Physical video games like Wii Fit Plus can help type 2 diabetesA new German study has found that type 2 diabetics playing computer interactive exercise games can help them control their blood sugar, and ultimately help type 2 diabetes.

220 type 2 diabetic patients (T2DM) aged 50 to 75 were recruited for the study and 120 of them were randomized to use the Nintendo’s Wii Fit Plus exercise game as the primary form of physical activity for half an hour a day over a period of 12 weeks, while the other 100 study subjects received routine care and then received the same exercise computer Wii items 12 weeks later. However, only 80% of study participants completed the 12-week study.

The Wii exercise game involved the use of a Nintendo Wii console with a hand-held control and a Wii balance board, which participants stood on during exercise. Both the hand-held control and balance board recorded a player’s movements. At the beginning and end of the 12-week study, the study participants had their weight, blood pressure and glucose glycated hemoglobin levels (A1C) measured.

The new study was led by Prof. Stephan Martin from the West German Centre for Diabetes and Health and he found that the group using the Wii Fit Plus exercise game had significantly better control of their blood glucose levels as compared with the group who received routine medical care (their A1C blood sugar levels dropped from 7.1 to 6.8).

The exercise computer gamers in the study not only had lower glucose blood levels but they also reported improvements in well-being and quality of life as well as weight loss when compared with the routine care group. The study’s conclusion was that “In this trial a low-threshold intervention with the interactive exercise game Wii Fit Plus was able to motivate T2DM patients to improve physical activity, glucometabolic control and quality of life.”

According to the American Diabetes Association (ADA), 25.8 million children and adults in the United States—8.3% of the population—have diabetes (both diagnosed & undiagnosed) and diabetes is the leading cause of new cases of blindness among adults aged 20–74 years and also the leading cause of kidney failure, accounting for 44% of new cases in 2008. This makes finding alternative ways to help type 2 diabetes sufferers exercise and be able to manage their blood glucose levels especially important.

Also according to the ADA, it is now well established that getting regular physical activity improves blood glucose control and can prevent or delay type 2 diabetes. Being active also has a positive effect on blood fat and blood pressure levels and can lower a person’s chances of having a heart attack or a stroke or of dying, and can improve quality of life. A minimum of 150 min/week of exercise undertaken at moderate intensity or greater can help type 2 diabetes sufferers immensely. Aerobic activity should be performed in bouts of at least 10 min and be spread throughout the week.

The new study provides further evidence that type 2 diabetic patients can do their exercise via computer games as an alternative way to get physically active.

Dr. Lam’s Adrenal Fatigue Perspective: How To Help Type 2 Diabetes:

For those suffering from Adrenal Fatigue, and especially those in advanced stages, getting proper exercise without stressing the body can be a challenge. With the body’s neuroendometabolic stress response already in a dysfunctional state, care needs to be taken to limit the amount of stress the body experiences.

Other home exercises also help type 2 diabetesWhile there is an unavoidable level of stress put on the body by doing the exercise itself, other stresses can originate from the environment, such as perhaps the less than sanitary equipment at the local gym, dealing with difficult individuals sharing the same exercise space, or even experiencing temperature sensitivity reactions from just going outdoors.

A controlled, relaxing exercise environment within one’s home can help to dispel these extra sources of stress. Home exercises such as yoga and exercise video games can be used with great effect to provide a low impact source of activity to boost your adrenal health. In combination, doing the right kind of exercise in the right environment is a powerful tool in the Adrenal Fatigue recovery toolbox. Now with respect to exercise video games, however, many with Adrenal Fatigue may have sensitivity to the electromagnetic fields generated by television and monitors, so you should be careful to manage your exposure.

Source: The study was titled “Autonomous exercise game use improves metabolic control and quality of life in type 2 diabetes patients – a randomized controlled trial” and was published on December 10, 2013 at BMC Endocrine Disorders

Physically interactive video games can help type 2 diabetes

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