Spare Just 2 Minutes for an After Dinner Stroll… Experts Say the Results Could be Life Changing

There is an age-old Mandarin folk saying, “If you take 100 steps after each meal, you’ll live to 99.” A paper published in the journal, Sports Medicine, confirms that those who follow that guidance might be on to something.

To me, after dinner walks are pure bliss – the perfect way to settle my stomach after a big meal, and a time to enjoy the warm breeze of a midsummer’s night. However, consistently prioritizing the time, and especially during the shorter days of fall, winter, and spring, I find to be a challenge. In reading these findings, I have renewed hope!

Scientist found that a walk of just two to five minutes after a meal can do the trick in keeping one’s blood sugar levels from spiking. Large spikes and quick drops in blood sugar has long been associated with the increased risk for both diabetes and heart disease.

It is natural after eating, and especially after consuming foods high in carbohydrates, for blood sugar levels to rise temporarily. In normal operation, one’s pancreas gland releases insulin to help balance a spike by signaling their cells to absorb the sugar. If one’s body experiences consistently large spikes in blood sugar, a problem can arise where cells may become “insulin resistant”.

So how does movement help? Our muscles fuel the walk by channeling and using some of the increased blood sugar. Additionally, according to the American Diabetes Association, “When you’re active, your cells become more sensitive to insulin, so it works more effectively to lower your blood sugar.”

Many earlier studies have found and supported these findings. What this study has proven, though, is that in as little as two to five minutes of activity, one’s body can receive the benefits of light movement. I plan to heed this advice.

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