Need to control your blood sugar? Want to feel better throughout the day? The answer is here–using a bite size portion control with exercise.
According to a new study published in the New York Times, “multiple brief, snack-sized portions of exercise may control blood sugar better than a single, continuous workout.” The latest questions and researches on exercise has been about how those with hypertension controlled their blood pressure better through the day by trading out their 30 minute strolls for three 10 minute walks throughout the day. And now, it’s been proven this same approach works to control blood sugar.
In this latest study, researchers “recruited nine adult men and women with medically confirmed insulin resistance” and as with those with insulin resistance (which can be a precursor to Type 2 diabetes) their blood sugar levels were elevated after they ate a meal.
What the researchers did with these men and women, was had them exercise in the research lab on three different occasions and for three different tests. On each occasion they did:
1. Walk on a treadmill at a moderate pace for 30 minutes, having them finish 30 minutes before dinner.
2. The participants were asked to break their workouts into bite-sized workouts before breakfast, lunch, and dinner. These workouts were high intensity intervals, where the participants walked as fast as they could for one minute on the treadmill, and moving down to a slower pace the next minute, and repeat 6 times, totaling a 12 minute workout.
3. Again the participants were asked to do the bite-sized workout method while walking at a high intense speed on the treadmill, but instead during their 1 minute break, they completed upper body resistance training using bands, and then would get back on the treadmills. This was also a 12 minute workout.
The results from the research was astounding. After the participants participated in the 30 minute walk, their “post-dinner blood sugar levels were lower than they had been in the baseline testing. But, only with the two bite-sized snacking style workouts were those effects visible throughout the day, not just with dinner.”
Physical activity proves to regulate blood sugar levels, but if you want to control them throughout the day, take the bite-sized approach.
For those of you interested in the “snacking-style” exercise here are some great ideas! Remember to try and keep it short with high intensity. You want your exertion to be at a 9 or so on a scale of 10.
-Walking around your block (hold weights in hand once the walk gets easy)
-Walk up hills
-Jog for one minute, walk for one minute
-Walk up flights of stairs, down and up
-Run in place for one minute, do some upper body movement the next minute
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