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Whole body Vibration and Diabetes – Does It Work?

Whole body vibration and diabetes

Whole body vibration and diabetes have been a hot topic of debate over the past few years. There is some promising evidence that supports the effects of whole body vibration on diabetes. Whether you have type I or type II diabetes, whole body vibration may be effective in the management of hyperglycemia.

In this article, we will cover the relationship between whole body vibration and diabetes to uncover whether you should try it.

Diabetic neuropathy

Diabetic neuropathy is a chronic medical complication of diabetes. It is caused by the prolonged exposure of blood vessels and nerves to high blood levels of glucose.

Diabetic neuropathy can present with a wide range of symptoms, including:

  • Decreased sensitivity to touch.
  • Numbness of the feet and legs
  • Difficulty in balance and coordination.
  • Muscle atrophy.
  • Nausea and vomiting.
  • Constipation.
  • Incomplete bladder emptying.
  • Vaginal dryness.
  • Erectile dysfunction.
  • Orthostatic hypotension (i.e., feeling dizzy when you stand up).

As you can see, diabetic neuropathy can be debilitating for a lot of patients and it is considered one of the most feared complications of diabetes.

For this reason, experts started studying diabetes and whole body vibration to see if the latter can actually mitigate the effects of chronic hyperglycemia.

What is whole-body vibration?

In the past decade, whole-body vibration has become quite popular. It is a passive exercise routine that involves a person standing on a vibrating platform that uses a frequency of 15–70 hertz (Hz) and an amplitude of 1–10 millimeters (mm).

Whole body vibration and diabetes have been the subject of many studies in the past few years with the goal of discovering the benefits of this technology on patients.

Initial research suggests that whole body vibration in diabetics can help improve tonicity, bone density, and coordination. Moreover, it has been shown to accelerate the fat-burning process by increasing the metabolic cost of exercise. In other words, if you integrate whole body vibration into your exercise routine, it can help you lose weight faster.

However, what’s even more interesting is the evidence that supports the positive effects of whole body vibration on diabetic neuropathy. In fact, patients reported improved symptoms of frequent urination, excessive thirst, and muscle wasting once they started doing whole body vibration.

The benefits of whole-body vibration and diabetes

Whole body vibration optimizes the way our cells use glucose. It also reduces inflammation and alters the composition of the microbiome. According to one study published in the Journal of Endocrinology, whole body vibration can be as beneficial as regular exercise for diabetic patients.

With that said, here is a more detailed breakdown of whole body vibration and diabetes:

Improves cellular sensitivity to insulin

Insulin is secreted by the pancreas in response to elevated blood sugar levels. It will then promote the entrance of glucose molecules inside the cell to be used in various metabolic pathways.

This process is disrupted in diabetes. You see, diabetic patients have developed resistance to the effects of insulin on the cell. As a result, more glucose will circulate in the blood since the only molecule that can get it inside (i.e., insulin) is not functional anymore.

Research that involved whole-body vibration and diabetes showed important improvement in insulin sensitivity, as well as an increase in lean muscle mass, which serves the same purpose.

Dampens inflammation

Scientists demonstrated that the use of whole-body vibration in exercise can increase the number of macrophages (a type of immune cell) that prevent inflammation. Chronic inflammation is one of the hallmarks of diabetes and can be a risk factor for other debilitating diseases, such as cardiovascular disease, inflammatory bowel syndrome, and osteoporosis.

Whole body vibration in diabetics can reduce the number of pro-inflammatory substances in the bloodstream through the modification of microbiota. It also promotes the growth of the type of macrophages responsible for inflammation regulation.

Enhances microbiome composition

The study of the composition of gut flora is an emerging field with great potential. A few years ago, we didn’t fully understand the effects of the normal flora on our health. As it turns out, we greatly underestimated its contribution.

Each person has a unique microbiome composition that’s just like a fingerprint. This composition is the result of genetics and the environment.

The new research suggests that studying the microbiome of one person could tell us a great deal about their health status, including their predisposition to certain diseases.

In many studies done in the lab, the research of whole body vibration and diabetes found that a change in microbiome composition occurs due to an increase in certain types of bacteria. It was not until recently that we concluded that this modification is beneficial.

Whole body vibration increases a type of bacteria that’s responsible for the production of short-chain fatty acids, which can play a major role in dampening inflammation.

Decreases diabetic neuropathy symptoms

Although many people describe diabetic neuropathy as an irreversible complication of diabetes, new research suggests otherwise. In one study, researchers found that the use of whole-body vibration for 6 weeks in a female with diabetic neuropathy significantly reduced the symptoms and the score of diabetic neuropathy.

The 52-year-old woman used to complain of fear of falling during the day and disrupted sleep cycle at night because of the pain, tingling, and numbness in her lower extremities.

She received many pharmaceutical drugs but with no results. Her symptoms drastically subsided after the use of whole body vibration.

Takeaway message

Whole body vibration and diabetes is an interesting field of research that demonstrated promising preliminary findings. Because this technique causes virtually no side effects, it doesn’t hurt to integrate it into your exercise routine in order to mitigate the symptoms of diabetic neuropathy.

We hope that this article managed to highlight the intricacies between whole body vibration and diabetes.

If you still have any questions about this topic or diabetic neuropathy in general, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us via this link for tailored advice.

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