If you have just had your meal and suffer from type 2 diabetes, then you should take a walk. A study has shown that short walks after each meal can help diabetics improve their health. The research was conducted in New Zealand on people suffering from type 2 diabetes.
Apparently, this small physical intervention caused a reduction in blood sugar levels. But more groundbreaking is the fact that this short walk was more effective than the current health recommendation that those suffering from type 2 diabetes should walk for at least 30 minutes a day.
How Walking After Meals Helps Diabetes Patients
The study involved 41 type 2 diabetes patients who took part in the two-week study. Accelerometers were used to measure activity levels, and another device was used to measure blood sugar levels every five minutes.
After meals, blood sugar levels reach their peak, which also explains why walking at this time is also much more effective. The researchers found that a short walk after meals caused a 22% decline in blood sugar levels after meals.
And in comparison to people who walked for just 30 minutes a day without any regard for their meal times, the test group experienced a 12% greater drop in blood sugar levels.
Most of the blood sugar reduction benefits of walking after meals were experienced after the evening meal, which are usually much higher in carbohydrates. Besides, when people consume this meal, they usually remain inactive for a long time. This sedentary period results in reduced benefits with regard to blood sugar levels even though patients may walk 30 minutes a day.
Nutrisystem Can Help
“More than 10% of adults in the US suffer from diabetes, which is why clinically studied programs like Nutrisystem D focus on helping these people learn how to eat and exercise properly to manage their condition”, says health specialist Beatrice of Bestiews, who also offers a coupon for Nutrisystem. Nutrisystem is a weight management program that has been found to reduce diabetes symptoms in overweight individuals.
Walking Right After Your Meal Lowers Your Blood Sugar
This study’s finding is a clear indication that walking at any time of the day is not as effective as walking immediately after meals for diabetics who need the workout to improve their blood sugar balance. One of the lead researchers in the study, Professor Jim Mann, pointed out that post-meal glucose is an important target in the management of diabetes because of its significant independent contribution to blood sugar imbalance.
Besides, walking after meals might also be effective in helping diabetics have healthier weight. By walking and reducing blood sugar levels, taking them closer to normal levels, these people can circumvent the need to use insulin as a way to lower their post-meal glucose levels.
Without this walk and its blood sugar reduction benefits, such people have to take more insulin especially because of the need for mealtime insulin injections.
These medications have been associated with weight gain. And considering that a large majority of people dealing with type 2 diabetes already have weight problems, reducing the need to use these medications might help these people avoid making their weight problems worse.
Walking is a low impact exercise that has many benefits. In addition to helping diabetic patients avoid weight gain, studies have shown that it reduces cancer risk. Following a diet where you eat whole grains as well as 5 portions of fruits and vegetables a day is necessary to support your health. Add to this a 20-minute brisk walk and you have many chances to die young at an old age!