Imagine - you worked all day in the office, cracking away at your 9-5 when you come home and want to workout. Mind you, your partner, or lovely roommates prepared for you a fantastic dinner, filled with all your favorite foods and meals you've been dying to have. You consider, just for a moment, would it be worth not enjoying this hot and warm meal now just so you can get in a quick workout?
Maybe this doesn't ever actually happen, but it sets up a perfect scenario for the topic we will be discussing today: Should I Walk After Dinner? It might be something silly to consider, but if you have ever been in a situation where you haven't been able to get in a workout during your day, this could be your chance to get in a little fitness into your day. Even more so, if you are feeling sluggish or tired by this time of the night, getting up and taking a short walk after eating can help combat this. Not only is walking a high-beneficial and fantastic low-impact activity to help you stay healthy, but it can also actually help to aid digestion and control blood sugar levels! This is what is needed in wanting to prevent crashes in energy. If you are curious about whether or not you should take a walk after dinner, here is a mini-guide of research we complied together to answer just that.
What Is High Blood Sugar and How Does It Affect Our Health?
So what are the advantages of walking after dinner? As mentioned before, walking after dinner can be extremely vital as it can help in lowering high blood sugar. Chronic to severe high blood pressure can drastically affect your health. For starters, over time, it can cause damage to your blood vessels, cause nerve problems and kidney disease, and even can cause vision issues. Chronic high blood sugar can also lead to insulin resistance and impaired glucose tolerance, risk factors for Type 2 diabetes. So how does walking exactly help this?
How Does Walking After Dinner Actually Benefit Our Health?
For starters, as we know, walking at any time of the day can have positive effects on health. This being said, taking a stroll after a meal is actually more effective for managing blood sugar levels than walking at earlier times. In a study published by Diabetes Care in 2013, it was found that walking for 15 minutes after a meal three times a day was more effective in lowering glucose levels three hours after eating compared to 45 minutes of sustained walking during the day. These results are so incredible and prove how important the advantages of walking after dinner can be! But there is actually more...
Walking at night might be the most beneficial since many people eat their most substantial meal in the evening and then tend to sit on the couch or lay down after. Another study published by Old Dominion University focusing on individuals with Type 2 diabetes found that even 20 minutes of walking post-meals may have a more substantial effect on lowering the glycemic impact of an evening meal in individuals with Type 2 diabetes, compared to walking before a meal or not at all. Did you know it can also help with digestion?
How Can Walking Can Help With Digestion?
There are even more positive effects of walking after eating. Individuals suffering from digestion issues and discomfort may also see some benefits from walking. A small study performed in 2008 by the Department of Medicine II found that walking increased the rate at which food moved through the stomach. Other research has found that walking after a meal may improve one's gastric emptying in patients with longstanding diabetes. This is important as food may typically take longer to digest and empty from the stomach for these patients.
The Bottom Line
Walking is one of the most studied forms of exercise, with research demonstrating it’s an ideal activity for improving health and longevity. Try going for a brief walk after a meal (especially in the evening) to help with digestion and blood sugar control. Need a little help if you are trying to count your steps: Check out some of our smartwatches from our iTouch Wearables collections!
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