Sitting for hours on end is known to contribute to chronic disease. A growing body of evidence shows the risk of developing a chronic illness such as heart disease, diabetes or cancer is exacerbated if you don’t perform physical exercise.
The big question is what constitutes physical exercise and for how long.
It has long been acknowledged that moderate exercise is the minimum requirement for improving health and wellness.
Researchers have found that 10 consistent minutes of walking is sufficient to improve health and live longer. Obviously, the more you exercise, the better shape your health will be in.
Experts are now advocating allowing employees that work in sedentary positions to be given time for a 5-minute light walk every half an hour. The recommendation comes on the back of a new study published in the journal Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise.
New Study Tests Whether A Light Walk Makes A Difference
The study examined 11 healthy adults in middle age and older. Participants were asked to sit in a lab for eight hours for five days — representing a full working week.
For four of the five days, the test subjects were permitted to use various strategies that constituted a light walk. The other day, they were only permitted to leave their seated position for a bathroom break.
Each day, researchers performed a series of health assessments including blood pressure and blood sugar levels — two of the biggest risk factors for heart disease.
Remarkably, the study showed that a minimal five-minute light walk every half an hour delivers some health benefits. Not only that, but a five-minute light walk was the only strategy that reduced blood sugar levels.
Interestingly, the results showed that blood sugar levels lowered by almost 60% after eating — indicating that a fire-minute light walk after mealtimes can make a huge difference to your health, particularly in patients with diabetes.
Short, Frequent Walks Improve Health
A light walk between one and five minutes reduces blood pressure by four or five points compared with sitting all day. That can actually make a significant difference in middle-aged to older individuals given that heart disease is the biggest killer in this age group.
Researchers also found that short, frequent walks deliver mental health benefits as well. Participants reported feeling less fatigued, energised and in a better mood following a light walk.
Download the Sweatcoin App
Sweatcoin is on a mission to promote technology for good and has developed a mobile app that is designed to encourage more people to walk more often.
The app features a built-in pedometer which converts your steps to a digital token (SWC) which can be used in exchange for multiple goods with over 300 merchandise.
Improve your health and your bank balance little by little. Download the Sweatcoin app and enjoy the benefits of a light walk every half an hour. It will improve your mood, your energy levels and your health.