Treatment of Diabetes with Lifestyle Changes: Physical Activity

  • Roberto Codella
  • Ileana Terruzzi
  • Livio LuziEmail author
Reference work entry
Part of the Endocrinology book series (ENDOCR)


Lifestyle improvements, like dietary changes and increased physical activity, are typically advocated for the cure, prevention, and reversion of several metabolic diseases, including diabetes mellitus. The non-pharmacological low-cost nature, along with the health-related benefits, increases the therapeutical appeal of regular physical activity. In the comprehensive approach of diabetes management, regular physical activity reduces risk of many diseases to which individuals with diabetes, particularly those with type 2 diabetes mellitus, are predisposed: hypertension, coronary heart diseases, and obesity.

The present chapter covers how exercise can facilitate optimal glucose control and lipid levels, assist in weight management, and prevent exacerbation of underlying diabetes-complications, moving medicine forward, far beyond the simplistic motto of “exercise more.”


Diabetes management Exercise benefits Physical activity 

List of Abbreviations


Continuous glucose monitoring


Cardiovascular diseases


Fasting blood glucose


Glucose transporter 4


Glycosylated hemoglobin


High density lipoproteins


Information and communication technologies


Impaired glucose tolerance


Phosphoinositide 3-kinase


Self-monitoring of blood glucose


Duality of Interest

No potential conflicts of interest relevant to this chapter were reported.

Contribution Statement

All authors were responsible for drafting the manuscript and revising it critically for valuable intellectual content. All authors approved the version to be published.


This research did not receive any specific grant from funding agencies in the public, commercial, or not-for-profit sectors.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Roberto Codella
    • 1
    • 2
  • Ileana Terruzzi
    • 3
  • Livio Luzi
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Biomedical Sciences for HealthIRCCS Policlinico San Donato Milanese, Università degli Studi di MilanoMilanItaly
  2. 2.Metabolism Research CenterIRCCS Policlinico San DonatoSan Donato MilaneseItaly
  3. 3.Diabetes Research Institute, Metabolism, Nutrigenomics and Cellular Differentiation UnitSan Raffaele Scientific InstituteMilanItaly

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