Walking after a meal has various scientifically proven benefits. You might have often heard your elders advise you not to lay. You might have often heard your elders advise you not to layFor as long as we can remember, we’ve been advised to wake up at the crack of dawn and get our hearts pumping.
While there’s no reason to dismiss these claims, it’s also important to remember that a short stroll post lunch or dinner can do you good (if you combine this with other forms of exercise). From boosting your metabolism to aiding digestion, and even lowering stress levels – you can enjoy all this and more, if you decide to take a few rounds of your neighbourhood park after meals.
In a study published in 2009, researchers discovered that a 20-minute walk, about 15 minutes post-dinner, led to lower levels of blood sugar in those who practiced this habit. Another analysis published by the journal Sports Medicine found that light walking after meals, even as little as two to five minutes, had a positive impact on regulating blood sugar levels. Now that we know the power of walking after eating, let’s get to some more benefits.
Benefits of walking post mealtime
Here are some of the advantages:
# It promotes digestion
After we eat food, our bodies get to work and start digesting what we’ve eaten. The food is then broken down into several nutrients – proteins, carbohydrates, vitamins, water, and more, before it is absorbed by the body. When you move around after eating, digestion is accelerated and you experience less bloating.
# It regulates blood sugar
By now, several studies have already established how the power of movement post mealtime can help your blood sugar levels. In fact, the American Diabetes Association has gone on to say that 10 minutes of post-dinner walking can improve blood glucose levels, as compared to other times during the day. If you practice walking daily after meals, your body can also lower the risk for insulin insensitivity.
# It lowers stress levels
Our busy schedules often become an excuse to avoid even a short walk in the park. But how about getting those endorphins flowing, post meals? Well, you can get your dose of this feel-good hormone as well as serotonin, a neurotransmitter that helps with good sleep and improves appetite.
# It enhances blood flow
When you move your body, there’s increased blood circulation, which is essential for healthy functioning muscles. What’s more, when your body pumps more blood, the vascular system gets strengthened and your organs work much better. All in all, walking after eating promotes good health and well-being.
# Improves quality of sleep
It’s easy to hit the sack right after a meal, but wait it out! That’s because you may feel sluggish, bloated, and end up getting heartburn too. Instead, take out some time and go for a short walk so that your body releases serotonin. It will not only help you feel much lighter, but will also improve your sleep quality.
The last word
Remember, this is an addition to your usual exercise routine and not a replacement. In fact, walking post-eating can help you clock 10,000 steps in a day. With hectic schedules, getting exercise can be a little hard, but these short bursts of movement can really make a difference.
If you find it too boring to walk alone, carry along some music or listen to a podcast. You can also ask a friend to join you – there’s nothing better than some good company.
Start small and in no time will you be able to improve your health and fitness. After all, every small drop makes an ocean!