Associations between daily step count classifications and continuous glucose monitoring metrics in adults with type 1 diabetes: analysis of the Type 1 Diabetes Exercise Initiative (T1DEXI) cohort.

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DOI: 10.1007/s00125-024-06127-2


AIMS/HYPOTHESIS: Adults with type 1 diabetes should perform daily physical activity to help maintain health and fitness, but the influence of daily step counts on continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) metrics are unclear. This analysis used the Type 1 Diabetes Exercise Initiative (T1DEXI) dataset to investigate the effect of daily step count on CGM-based metrics.

METHODS: In a 4 week free-living observational study of adults with type 1 diabetes, with available CGM and step count data, we categorised participants into three groups-below (10,000) the daily step count goal-to determine if step count category influenced CGM metrics, including per cent time in range (TIR: 3.9-10.0 mmol/l), time below range (TBR:10.0 mmol/l).

RESULTS: A total of 464 adults with type 1 diabetes (mean±SD age 37±14 years; HbA1c 48.8±8.1 mmol/mol [6.6±0.7%]; 73% female; 45% hybrid closed-loop system, 38% standard insulin pump, 17% multiple daily insulin injections) were included in the study. Between-participant analyses showed that individuals who exceeded the mean daily step count goal over the 4 week period had a similar TIR (75±14%) to those meeting (74±14%) or below (75±16%) the step count goal (p > 0.05). In the within-participant comparisons, TIR was higher on days when the step count goal was exceeded or met (both 75±15%) than on days below the step count goal (73±16%; both p < 0.001). The TBR was also higher when individuals exceeded the step count goals (3.1%±3.2%) than on days when they met or were below step count goals (difference in means -0.3% [p=0.006] and -0.4% [p=0.001], respectively). The total daily insulin dose was lower on days when step count goals were exceeded (0.52±0.18 U/kg; p < 0.001) or were met (0.53±0.18 U/kg; p < 0.001) than on days when step counts were below the current recommendation (0.55±0.18 U/kg). Step count had a larger effect on CGM-based metrics in participants with a baseline HbA1c ≥53 mmol/mol (≥7.0%).

CONCLUSIONS/INTERPRETATION: Our results suggest that, compared with days with low step counts, days with higher step counts are associated with slight increases in both TIR and TBR, along with small reductions in total daily insulin requirements, in adults living with type 1 diabetes.

DATA AVAILABILITY: The data that support the findings reported here are available on the Vivli Platform (ID: T1-DEXI; ).

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Humans; Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1; Adult; Female; Male; Blood Glucose Self-Monitoring; Blood Glucose; Middle Aged; Exercise; Glycated Hemoglobin; Insulin; Cohort Studies; Continuous Glucose Monitoring


Daily step count; Exercise; Physical activity; Time in range; Type 1 diabetes

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