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Aerobic exercise

Physical movement that results from rhythmic muscular contractions that are primarily fueled by the aerobic metabolism of energy in the body; oxygen-based generation of energy is usually the main source for any activity lasting longer than 2 min continuously.

Autonomic neuropathy

Disease affecting the nerves innervating the heart, gastrointestinal, and genitourinary tract; cardiovascular autonomic neuropathy (CAN) is the most common, studied, and clinically important type of this neuropathy.

Cardiorespiratory (aerobic) fitness

The ability of the circulatory and respiratory systems to supply oxygen to skeletal muscles during sustained (aerobic) physical activity.

Continuous glucose monitoring (CGM)

Newer technologies that allow for subcutaneous monitoring of glucose levels with frequent readings (usually every 5 min).

Daily lifestyle activity

All physical activities done during the course of a day involved with self-care, basic locomotion, and other movement other than planned exercise sessions (also called activities of daily living [ADL]).

Diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA)

High level of blood ketones (e.g., β-hydroxy-butyrate, acetoacetate, acetone), accompanied by hyperglycemia, that can result in coma or death if not treated in a timely manner.

Estimated average glucose (eAG)

Alternate method to report hemoglobin A1C levels, as an estimated average glucose in mg/dl instead of percent (e.g., A1C value of 6.0% equates to an eAG of 126 mg/dl); the relationship between A1C and eAG is described by the formula (28.7 × A1C) − 46.7 = eAG. An online calculator is available at

Gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM)

A hyperglycemic condition developing most often during the third trimester of pregnancy (when placental hormones decrease insulin action); although it usually resolves postpartum, it is associated with a greater risk for the mother of developing type 2 diabetes later in life.

Hemoglobin A1C (or A1C)

Test to assess glycemic control that reflects a time-averaged blood glucose concentration (as a percent) over the previous 2–3 months; a normal value is ~4.0–6.0%.


An elevated blood glucose level (i.e., blood glucose ≥126 mg/dl).


An abnormally low blood glucose level (i.e., blood glucose <70 mg/dl).

Insulin resistance

A condition in which there is a relative lack of insulin action in insulin-sensitive tissues (primarily skeletal muscle) needed to maintain normal glucose levels.

Latent autoimmune diabetes of the adult (LADA)

A form of type 1 diabetes that is often slower in onset and diagnosed in adults.

Metabolic syndrome

A syndrome characterized by a constellation of disorders, including insulin resistance, obesity, central adiposity, glucose intolerance or diabetes, dyslipidemia, and hypertension.

Muscular endurance

The ability of muscles to contract using submaximal force over a period of time, based on criteria such as the number of pushups that can be done in a minute.

Muscular strength

The maximal ability of a muscle to exert force, often measured as the amount of resistance that can be moved one time (one-repetition maximum).


A microvascular disease affecting the kidneys, resulting in excessive urinary protein (microalbuminuria, followed by gross proteinuria) as a marker of end-stage renal disease.

Peripheral neuropathy

Disease affecting the nerves in the extremities, especially the lower legs and feet, resulting in pain or loss of sensation and increased risk of amputation.

Resistance (strength) exercise

Physical activity aimed at increasing muscular strength or muscular endurance through the use of resistance or weights.


A disease caused by long-term damage to blood vessels of the retina caused by elevated blood glucose levels; the stages include nonproliferative (less severe) and proliferative (more advanced and severe form), the latter of which is the leading cause of new blindness in adults.

Self-monitoring of blood glucose (SMBG)

The practice of using blood glucose monitoring devices outside of clinical settings to monitor changes in blood glucose levels.

Type 1 diabetes (T1D)

Immune-mediated disease that selectively destroys the pancreatic β-cells, leading to a central defect in insulin release upon stimulation; although more commonly associated with youth, it can develop in individuals of any age and frequently occurs in adulthood as well as in latent autoimmune diabetes of the adult.

Type 2 diabetes (T2D)

Disease directly related to insulin resistance, formerly thought to afflict persons older than the age of 40 years, which now has an increasing prevalence in younger children and adolescents; this type of diabetes accounts for 90–95% of all cases of the disease.

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