SIMPLE lifestyle change slashes risk of type 2 diabetes and heart disease
(NaturalHealth365) Heart disease and type 2 diabetes are significant health issues in the United States and globally. Known as “lifestyle diseases,” they typically occur because of the person’s diet and other lifestyle choices. Lack of exercise is one of the many contributing factors that are well known. Still, researchers are only now beginning to understand just how detrimental a sedentary lifestyle is and how important it is to get out there and move.
A new study conducted by researchers at the Turku PET Centre and the UKK Institute in Finland found that shaving just one hour off of your current sedentary time each day can help reduce type 2 diabetes and heart disease risk.
Study shows becoming less sedentary improves health in many ways
The study participants were divided into two groups: the intervention and control groups. The intervention group incorporated one hour of light exercise into their daily routine, trading it for an hour of being sedentary. They engaged in light intensity physical activity as well as just standing more. The control group did not change their sedentary habits at all.
The intervention group was able to shave around 50 minutes off of their daily sedentary time. Over three months, they showed several health benefits such as improved blood sugar regulation, liver health, heart health, and insulin sensitivity. While this may not be enough to prevent these diseases if the person’s risk factors are severe, it is definitely a step in the right direction, and this study shows that even small changes can show improvements.
One hour of light exercise a day offers meaningful health benefits
Doctors have long known that physical activity has certain health benefits. One area where it has been studied intensely is how it affects blood glucose levels. Research shows that even light exercise can lower glucose levels and help with diabetes prevention and treatment.
Light intensity physical activity can also help strengthen your immune system, decrease your risk of depression and anxiety, improve circulation, and boost your lymphatic system. If you add just an hour of light exercise to your daily routine, you could enjoy lower cholesterol, lower blood pressure, better mental health, and a lower risk of diabetes and heart disease.
Quick start guide to get you moving
Light exercise involves very low-impact activities that do not require a great deal of exertion. You won’t break a sweat (unless in a very warm environment), and it won’t make you feel short of breath. This form of physical activity is a more leisurely approach to exercise and does not have the pressure of intentional, intense physical movement.
If you want to trade some of your sedentary time for light physical activity, give these tips a try:
- Take a leisurely walk or start caring for an outdoor/indoor garden
- If you want to sweat (which is great for detoxification) … dress warmly
- Simply stand more often throughout the day
- Stand while you work by using a standing (adjustable) desk
- Go for a casual bike ride (less than 5 mph)
- Light stretching of your muscles, several times per day
- Low-intensity housework like washing dishes, sweeping floors or folding clothes
This light activity can be a starting point for you to build up to higher intensity activity which is even better for your health. The key is to keep moving. Just be ready for the side effects of a better life.
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