According to a research by Mayo Clinic, minimal activity sustained for 30 minutes (walking 0.7 miles in 33 minutes) lowers post-meal glucose concentrations. Such activity has little or no risk for almost everybody. The diabetes patients had 145% higher glucose after inactivity compared to when they walked. walking began to affect glucose levels ten minutes after the exercise started and the benefits extended until five minutes after it had stopped.
A report published by Diabetes Care, the benefits of walking after meals were much more significant than taking one sustained walk in either the morning or afternoon. Lead author Dr. Loretta DiPietro told ABC News: "A post-meal walk is timed to when blood glucose just starts to climb. The muscle activity and the muscle contractions help to clear glucose." Post-meal walking is most beneficial to middle-aged and obese people who are showing signs of pre-diabetes or older people who may be too stressful to take one giant bout of exercise. At least three walks per day are necessary to see results.
Another study by George Washington University shows that a 15-minute walk after each meal can help to lower the risk of type 2 diabetes, especially in elderly adults. Besides can significantly reduce blood sugar levels, it helps minimizing the risk of cardiovascular diseases.
After evaluating 10 volunteers in their early 70s who have elevated blood sugar levels and not diabetic, participants were asked to walk on a treadmill for either 45 minutes in the mid-morning or afternoon, or for 15 minutes after each meal, researchers found that:
· Three short walks after meals were just as effective as a 45-minute walk in reducing blood sugar.
· High post-dinner blood sugar is a strong indicator of excessive 24-hour glucose levels, so resting after a meal can be one of the worst habits to fall in to.
· Walking after the evening meal, which tends to be the largest consumed, was most effective.
Base on a sample size of 20,000 Britons, Imperial College London and University College London found that people who get to work under their own steam are around 40 per cent less likely to develop diabetes as those who drive. Cycling, walking, and using public transport were all associated with a lower risk of being overweight than driving or taking a taxi.
High blood pressure, diabetes, and being overweight are all major risk factors for heart and circulatory disease. The majority have Type 2 is strongly linked to being overweight or obese, leading a sedentary lifestyle and an unhealthy diet. British scientists used survey data from 2009-11 to find the links between active travel to work and diabetes or hypertension.
Robin Hewings, of Diabetes UK, said the charity ‘recommends that the best way to reduce your risk of Type 2 diabetes is by combining physical activity with a healthy balanced diet that is low in salt, fat and sugar and rich in fruit and vegetables’.
This study has highlighted the importance of building physical activity into the daily routine by walking, cycling or using public transport to get to work is good for personal health.
A study by Leicester University found those at high risk of developing diabetes can reduce the likelihood by cutting the time they spend sitting by 90 minutes a day.
From a personal’s perspective, Good health will go a long way in managing a person’s quality of life from now onwards.
The report, Walking Works by Ramblers and Macmillian Cancer Support details the health benefits of the humble walk - Regular walking to fulfil the 150 minutes of moderate physical exercise every week recommended by the UK's chief medical officer could save 37,000 lives each year. It could also lead to nearly 300,000 fewer cases of type 2 diabetes.
After observing participants aged between 18 and 80 over a six-year period, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in California found that brisk walking reduces the risk of heart disease more effectively than running – Walking reduced the risk by 9.3% as compare to 4.5% in running.
Based on a 12-year study of more than 300,000 people, researchers from University of Cambridge said –
· A lack of exercise could be killing twice as many people as obesity in Europe,
· 676,000 deaths each year were down to inactivity as compared with 337,000 from carrying too much weight.
They concluded that getting everyone to do at least 20 minutes of brisk walking a day would have substantial benefits.
Prof Ulf Ekelund, one of the researchers, told BBC News:
"The greatest risk [of an early death] was in those classed inactive, and that was consistent in normal weight, overweight and obese people,"
"Twenty minutes of physical activity, equivalent to a brisk walk, should be possible for most people to include on their way to or from work, or on lunch breaks, or in the evening instead of watching TV."
How to start an exercise?
Dr. I-Min Lee, an associate professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School, said "For someone who's not accustomed to being physically active, we say start slowly and increase slowly". Instead of taking one 30-minute walk, take three shorter walks of 10 minutes each. They'll still have the same beneficial impact.
After my transplant, I took a slower pace of walking and walked a shorter distance. When I was comfortable, I increased my pace with walked for longer distance. In addition, buy specialist walking shoes because we strike the ground first with our heel when we walk.
Matter to note for Diabetics –
If one is taking diabetic medications or insulin, exercise can increase the risk of hypoglycemia or low blood sugar. If one’s glucose is too low, one may be fainted. Precautions must be taken. One should check the blood sugar level before exercising - experts propose at least 5.6mmol/L. Personally I take a small bowl of cereals without any milk before my walking. Such step is agreeable by my dietitian.
Underlying message of my post to you:
· A small amount of exercise will have a long term impact on the well-being of your health and your pocket.
· Do not get overwhelmed by the prospect of exercise. Just go out and be active.
· If you decide to lunch-in during office hours, it is beneficial to take a 15 minutes of walks after the meal
· 15 walking out of office and get some sun lights for Vitamin D – Sound familiar (I have a post on this topic)
· Do not sit in front of the TV after each meal, take a walk with your partner. Besides improve relationship, it has health benefits.
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Disclaimer: I am not a Medical Doctor. All my blog postings are based on my personal experience that I've went thru and what I've read up from the internet. If you've any symptoms of diabetes OR want to better manage your health, I strongly urge you to have regular medical-ups to avoid future complications. In addition, control your diet portions and have regular exercise.