Take a Stroll AFTER Meals for Better Blood Sugar Levels

All of us are probably sick of the nagging of having to do more physical activity. (Guilty!) Truth be told, exercise is probably the number one free and easily accessible medicine of all times. Many of us take it for granted and rather rely on expensive pills and blindly accept the possible side-effects that come along with them.

Motivating people to move is a battle that health experts are relentless trying to win. However, it would appear that a simple tweak in how the recommendation is expressed is all that is needed to manage blood sugar levels better.

The Study

A randomized, crossover study was conducted by a team of researchers from the University of Otago in New Zealand. This study included 41 participants with type 2 diabetes and an average age of 60. The researchers of the study formulated two recommendations: one that recommends walking 10 minutes after every meal while the other suggests 30 minutes of walking in total per day. Participants begin with one of the two recommendations before switching to the other. Each intervention was maintained for two weeks and included a 30-day washout period.

The Findings

Blood sugar levels were lower by 12% when people took a 10-minute stroll after every meal than when they included 30-minute of walking scattered throughout the day. This observation is most seen after the evening meal when the largest amount of carbohydrate is consumed.

Rather than recommending 150 minutes of exercise every week, suggesting a 10-min post-meal walk may be more effective in managing blood sugar.

“The benefits relating to physical activity following meals suggest that current guidelines should be amended to specify post-meal activity, particularly when meals contain a substantial amount of carbohydrate,” say the researchers.

This study is published in the journal Diabetologia.

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