Tired of sitting hunched over your desk all day? Taking a five-minute stroll each half hour could be the secret to better health and improved mood, according to new research from Columbia University. Studies confirm that this simple movement can reduce blood sugar levels and spikes by up to 60%, while lowering your blood pressure and boosting your mood.
The researchers conducted a study to determine the optimal amount of movement for humans. 11 people participated to determine the most beneficial exercise regime for people who sit in an ergonomic chair for long periods of time. Each individual took part in five regimes, ranging from one minute intervals after every 30 and 60 minutes to no walking breaks at all. By empirically testing multiple options with varying frequency and duration levels, conclusive evidence was offered as well as specific guidelines concerning optimal physical activity patterns while seated.
They allowed participants to perform activities such as working on laptops, reading books and using their phones while monitoring how much they exercised over prolonged periods of time. The results indicated that taking five minutes’ worth of walking breaks every 30 minutes had beneficial effects in terms of blood sugar levels and reduced systolic blood pressure by up to 5 mm/Hg when compared with confined sitting all day long. Interestingly, any other frequent intervals or lengths were found not to provide improvements, hence demonstrating the importance timing plays regarding physical activity.
Regular movement isn’t just for the gym – it’s essential to maintain good health. This research shows that even in small doses, periodic walking throughout your work day can have a marked impact on reducing heart disease risk and other chronic conditions.
By introducing manageable amounts of exercise into your daily routine you’ll be feeling invigorated in no time. So why not take advantage of the health benefits and give yourself regular walking breaks throughout the day for better physical and mental wellness.
To view the original scientific study click below:
Breaking Up Prolonged Sitting to Improve Cardiometabolic Risk: Dose-Response Analysis of a Randomized Cross-Over Trial