Sitting for too long can take a serious toll on your health, but new research shows that just 3 minutes of movement can help in a big way.
As The Doctors have previously shared excessive sitting can affect your posture in a negative way, increase someone's weight, cause high blood pressure and high blood sugar, lead to excess body fat around the waist, and abnormal cholesterol levels.
Many of us have no choice but to sit while working, but The New York Times shares the results of a study that shows making sure you move every 30 minutes for just 3 minutes can lessen the effects of sitting.
During those 3 minutes, if you are able to move your body and do things like jumping jacks, squats, climbing stairs, or taking as little as 15 steps the body's blood sugar is better maintained.
In the study, groups of people used an alarm on their phones to remind them to move, along with a fitness monitor, and those who moved more had lower fasting blood sugar levels in the morning (which means their bodies better-controlled blood sugar in the night, which the NYT notes is a potentially important indicator of metabolic health). Additionally, those who moved every 30 minutes, had more stabilized blood sugar levels throughout the day and fewer spikes and dips, along with a higher amount of beneficial HDL cholesterol. Also, those who moved 75 steps or more during their 3-minute break saw the best improvement in their metabolism.
Dr. Erik Näslund, who conducted the study, shares his tips for those looking to add more movement to their sedentary day and suggests:
- Use an app or alarm on your phone or computer to remind you to move every 30 minutes.
- Talk a walk, jog in place, take a bathroom break (go the long way to the restroom to add more steps), or get another coffee or refill your water bottle in order to get those steps in.
- Keep moving when you leave your job or office, he also suggests. “In general, it is important to introduce more physical activity into our lives,” he tells the NYT. “Walk stairs rather than take the elevator. Get off one bus stop earlier on the way home. There are so many minor changes we can make that are beneficial for metabolic health.”
The Doctors suggest taking an after-work walk in order to stay active and find out all the amazing health benefits that a post-work stroll in your neighborhood can provide!