Thirty Minutes Three Times a Week is Not Enough

If you have heard that you get maximum benefit from exercising for 30 minutes three times a week, you've been given bad advice. Exercise can help to lower high blood pressure, cholesterol, insulin levels and body fat. However, for most people, it takes a lot of exercise to see these results.

A recent study shows that many people need to exercise a very long time just to achieve a normal life expectancy (Current Opinion in Lipidology, February 2007). One out of three Americans can expect to develop diabetes, and most of these people have bodies that cannot respond adequately to insulin because they eat too much food and do not exercise enough. This causes their blood sugar to rise too high after meals, which, in turn, causes the pancreas to put out huge amounts of insulin that makes them even fatter. Exercise can keep blood sugar from rising too high after meals. When muscles are full of sugar, blood sugar goes from the intestines into the bloodstream and spikes to high levels. On the other hand, when muscles are empty of sugar, sugar goes from intestines into the blood and then directly into muscles to prevent the spike. It doesn't matter much whether you exercise before or after eating, because both help to prevent the spike in blood sugar that follows meals.

This study found that increasing the intensity of exercise reduces insulin resistance. If you store fat primarily in your belly, rather than your hips, the odds are overwhelming that you are either diabetic or pre-diabetic, and without changing your lifestyle, you will not live your normal lifespan. If your doctor clears you for exercise, start an exercise program. If your exercise program does not get rid of your belly fat, increase both the length and the intensity of your workouts. More on how to start an exercise program


Post a Comment