People with type 2 diabetes are at high risk for heart disease, partly because their cardiovascular systems age more quickly than those of people with normal blood sugar. Fitness levels of people with diabetes are roughly 20 percent lower than those of healthy non-diabetic people their same age. With time, this interferes with mobility and quality of life and eventually it increases premature mortality.
This downward slide is not inevitable, however. Researchers at the University of Colorado have found that a progressive exercise program can reverse some of this decline and improve cardiovascular fitness. They note that even regular brisk walks can help people with diabetes keep from aging early.
[Integrative Biology of Exercise VI, Westminster, CO]