Just like your natural melatonin levels fall and rise at certain times of the day, so does your blood sugar. After you eat, your blood sugar increases, and the pancreas secretes a hormone called insulin, per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. This hormone signals the body to soak up glucose, lowering blood sugar along the way. The body uses the glucose in one of three ways:
- Uses that sugar as fuel now
- Stores that energy in the liver as glycogen to use later
- Converts it into fatty acids to store as fat in our adipose tissue
For individuals who have been diagnosed with prediabetes or type 2 diabetes, insulin resistance can derail or hamper this process. Whether you have diabetes or not, however, it’s ideal to keep blood sugar levels within a fairly steady range to help maintain sustained energy and reduce your risk of developing type 2 diabetes later on.
One of the easiest, most affordable and most effective ways to help your body stay sugar-steady? Lacing up your sneakers and going for a stroll. Research shows that a post-meal walk as short as two to five minutes may have a significant impact on blood sugar levels, and the benefits multiply if you take even more steps and make physical activity a regular part of your routine.
Excerpted from Eating Well