Less sugar, better exercise

Less sugar, better exercise

By now, we’re familiar with how important exercise is, even if that doesn’t necessarily mean we enjoy doing it. But what if our diet made it easier for us to benefit from certain kinds of exercise?

Researchers in Massachusetts may have some tips.

A study published in Nature Metabolism suggests that high levels of blood sugar may render our efforts at aerobic exercise null. Specifically, elevated blood sugar levels, as seen in hyperglycemic or pre-diabetic people, may make it difficult for individuals to reach their aerobic capacity and prevent them from reaping the full reward of a good sweat.

In the initial stage of the study, which used mouse models, high levels of sugar appeared to sabotage hyperglycemic muscle strengthening by changing proteins found in the space between muscle cells, where new blood vessels would otherwise form. Their fitness levels were impaired.

When researchers tested their findings in people with glucose intolerance, or hyperglycemia, where blood sugar levels rise with the consumption of sugar, they found the least bang for the buck among those who exercised.

That being said, researchers still emphasized the benefits of aerobic activity for hyperglycemia, and recommended switching up what you eat order to lower blood sugar and reach your full aerobic potential.

Diet and exercise are often touted together for weight loss and other health benefits. Now, it may be helpful to view them as intertwined lifestyle changes that have a positive effect on each other, as well as your body.

We may hate to hear it, but the evidence keeps piling up: If you eat well, you’ll move better.

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