kids swimmingDiabetes prevention needs to start early.  I myself never paid much attention to diabetes – I have always been fairly active and healthy with my choices, but when one of my younger cousins was diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes, my eyes were opened to the fact that while I was making healthy choices for myself, I wasn’t encouraging my family members to do the same.

After my cousin was diagnosed I set out to learn as much as I could to try and help her. I was astonished at what I found – according to St. Joseph’s Hospital Cardiac Center, if diabetes is left untreated, people can develop heart disease, stroke, and even neurological problems later in life. This is not what I want my cousin to face later in her life! Through further research, I learned that the best way to prevent – and manage – Type 2 Diabetes is through a healthy nutrition and regular exercise. Phew – something I can actually help her with…

kids walkingSince exercise is one of the major forms of diabetes prevention, parents should engage kids in exercise to counteract the foods that they may eat over the holidays. Exercise controls kids’ blood sugar levels and helps insulin work better in the body. Weight can also be controlled by exercise, and this can help to manage insulin levels.

Consider these activities to help kids active throughout the holidays:

Engage in Child’s Play   

Sometimes I see adults discourage children from playing “too much”, but the act of play is a form of exercise and can help children prevent diabetes. Children can run and play tag to stay active, or even go on family walks or hikes in the woods.  Games like tennis, badminton, Frisbee or mini golf are also forms of child’s play that are great activities for diabetes prevention.  Basketball, kickball, and soccer are also additional ways to prevent diabetes in children.


Walking is a great form of exercise. Go for a walk in your neighborhood or walk in a park. This can prevent diabetes and help to keep the insulin regulated.  Find a wooded area or an interesting area to walk in and be certain to vary your speed while walking. To build leg muscles, try walking backward. Thirty minutes is recommended for the best results.

Ride a Bicycle
Bicycle riding can also help those who may be at-risk for developing diabetes. Experts recommend taking a diabetic supply kit along on the ride and avoiding wooded area. Scratches or injury can be difficult to heal if you have diabetes.  Many kids love to ride bikes so it will not feel like exercise to them, but more as a fun activity that they actually enjoy doing.


Swimming is recommended for people with diabetes because it doesn’t require so much effort on one’s joints. Diabetics should swim with a friend in the event of diabetic shock and always test blood sugar before and after being active.

Prevent Diabetes Through the Holidays
Staying active through the holidays can help to prevent diabetes in kids. Kids can develop good habits early, and these good habits can turn into long-term lifestyle choices that will keep them healthy for many years to come.

Carolyn is a 20-something year old with a passion for life, fitness and overall well-being. She is an avid cycler, golfer and has been known to bust some serious moves on the dance floor. Check out Carolyn’s blog at

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