Walking after a meal lowers blood sugar

Walking after a meal lowers blood sugar

Thanksgiving is right around the corner, so close you might already be able to taste the turkey, stuffing and pumpkin pie.

After you feast with family and friends, you’ll likely feel stuffed and lethargic. Don’t plop down on the couch in front of the TV. Go for a walk ¾ it will help you in more ways than one.

A post-meal walk not only helps food move through your digestive system, but it may also lower your blood sugar.

Even better, there is no need for a mileslong hike. The time commitment can be as short as two to five minutes. That’s according to a study in the research journal Sports Medicine.

The study examined the impact of sitting, standing and walking on the body’s insulin and blood sugar levels. Research participants were asked to either stand or walk for a couple of minutes every 20 to 30 minutes over the course of a day.

Researchers found that people’s blood sugar rose and fell more gradually when they took a short walk after eating. Plus, their insulin levels were more stable than those who stood or sat after a meal.

But why does walking impact blood sugar? Well, since our muscles need glucose to function, our bodies tap into the sugar in our bloodstream as we walk. This is the reason so many runners eat carbohydrates before a race.

If two to five minutes isn’t enough, you could always extend the length and distance of your walk. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention notes that people who are physically active for 150 minutes per week have a 33% lower risk of mortality from all causes than those who are inactive.

You don’t have to trudge more than two hours in a single day, of course. Just take it one step at a time.

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