Doing a few small things throughout the day that will keep us healthy and taking 5-minute walks throughout the day is no exception. According to Journal, Medicine in Science in Sports and Exercise walking for 5 minutes periodically can reverse any damage caused to the leg arteries.
Sitting for long periods of time can increase the risk of cardiovascular and other metabolic diseases, and cause higher cholesterol levels and a bigger waistline. Muscles relax when you are sitting and do not contribute to pumping blood to the heart.
In the study 11, healthy men ranging in ages of 20-35 years of age took part in the trials. During the initial trial, the subjects sat for 3 hours without moving their legs. The researchers used ultrasounds and blood pressure cuffs to measure how well the femoral artery or the large artery in the thigh was functioning. In the next trial, the subjects sat for 3 hours but this time also walked on a treadmill for 5 minutes at the 30 minute mark of every hour.
The trials revealed that while sitting the contraction and enlargement of the subjects arteries were impaired by 50% after only the first hour. It was also interesting to note that there was no decrease in arterial function among the participants who walked for 5 minutes each hour.
I would say that if we are mindful of what we do all day then we can probably avoid many of the diseases like type 2 diabetes or heart disease. More often than not we get into trouble with our health because we get too preoccupied with what life is throwing at us. Getting too engrossed in our work or heavily focused on catching up with our favorite television program. I know this all too well.
At work, I am a perfectionist, and I tend to want everything to go right for my patients. This is at the detriment of everything going on around me. I have realized that sometimes even at work to have better clarity of what is going on; it’s better to just talk a short walk and figure it out. If you have more questions on what other small things you can do to improve your health, just call my office for an appointment. I will be glad to put you on the path to better health.
Dr. Shah, MD
Hourly 5-minute walks ‘reverse arterial damage caused by .., http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/282194.php (accessed September 9, 2014).
Sitting for long periods of time can increase cancer risk .., http://www.gmanetwork.com/news/story/367098/lifestyle/healthandwellness/sitting-for-long-periods-of-time-can-increase-cancer-risk-says-us-study (accessed September 9, 2014).