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November 9, 2003

Exercise and Sports, Other Social Issues

Question from Australia:

My boyfriend has type 1 diabetes, and when we 'get active', he usually gets a hypo. Is there a way to prevent this happening? I have been looking around and so far haven't found anything that works (e.g., sweets, and on one occasion, body chocolate). What can we do?

Answer:

It is reasonable to look at physical activity with sex as being one more type of exercise. I would recommend a rapid-acting form of carbohydrate prior to sexual activity. Not all forms of sweets are rapid-acting. Chocolate has fat and delays gastric emptying. You have to take the carbohydrate far enough in advance to work. Decreasing the insulin dose is not likely to work because you would have to do it hours ahead of time.

JTL