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Research confirms a five-minute walk every half hour is key to longevity

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A recent Columbia University study has found that getting up for a five-minute walk every half hour could literally save your life. The research, conducted by the Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons has confirmed what we’ve long suspected, that a sedentary lifestyle is one of the biggest contributors to early deaths. 

The research, with findings published in Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, the American College of Sports Medicine journal, tested five different approaches to ‘minute’ exercises against a controlled no-exercise group to confirm that five minutes every half hour hits the sweet spot for enhanced longevity. 

Four other groups of participants were asked to engage in one minute of walking every hour or every half hour, as well as five-minute walks every half or full hour. 

The research found that “Compared to control, glucose incremental area under the curve was significantly attenuated only for the every 30 minutes for 5-minute dose.” In other words, a five-minute walk for every hour of sitting has a positive impact on lowering blood sugar and blood pressure– the short exercise is enough to lower blood sugar level spike by 58 per cent.

The research suggests that walking, arguably the easiest and most accessible exercise is beneficial even in smaller increments. As little as one minute of walking every half hour had a positive impact on mood and lessened fatigue. 

Be it on a binge-watching spree or getting into a groove at the office, we often forget to get up and just stretch our legs a little. Easy ways to encourage yourself to get up and get moving include getting up for scheduled water breaks, splitting up chores throughout the day or setting reminders and alarms on your wearable and tech devices. 

Also see: New enzyme could be answer to healthier sugar consumption


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