Type 2 Diabetes: This Simple Lifestyle Change Can Help Prevent The Disease, New Study Says

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A new study has found that insulin function improved when study participants interrupted long periods of sitting by standing up.

Every year, 3.7 million deaths occur due to diabetes and high blood glucose, of which diabetes causes 1.5 million deaths globally, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). A total of 422 million adults have diabetes, and one in 11 people live with this serious health disease. 

A new study published in the Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport has now suggested a simple method that can help prevent serious health conditions like Type 2 diabetes.

They said taking a break from long hours of sitting to stand up can do the wonder. 

The research conducted by scientists from Finland’s Turku PET Centre and UKK Institute discovered a link between standing and better insulin sensitivity, observing that insulin function improves when the participants interrupted long periods of sitting by standing up. 

Diabetes increases the risk for the occurrence of complications like stroke, blindness, kidney failure, and heart disease. People with this disease are at an increased risk of premature death. 

Role Of Insulin Causing Type 2 Diabetes

Insulin performs the function of regulating body metabolism and blood sugar levels, by allowing glucose to enter the cells. However, when a person is overweight, the body’s insulin hormone functions are disturbed. This results in a reduction in insulin sensitivity and an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

How Standing & Insulin Production Is linked

The study is unique because it closely observed how long durations of inactivity impact insulin production. The study found that insulin function improved when study participants interrupted long periods of sitting by standing up.

This is true even for inactive adults at higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes, irrespective of how long they sat, their activity and fitness levels, or whether they were overweight. 

WHO’s Worries & Suggestions

Diabetes, heart disease, cancer, stroke and chronic lung diseases are some examples of non-communicable diseases (NCDs). The United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal number 3 targets a one-third reduction in premature deaths attributable to non-communicable diseases, by 2030. 

According to the WHO, more than 70 per cent of deaths are caused annually due to lifestyle-related conditions. This amounts to be 41 million deaths worldwide. In low- and middle-income countries, almost three-quarters of these deaths occur, emphasising that poverty and lifestyle-related diseases are linked with each other. 

An unhealthy diet, exposure to tobacco smoke, excessive alcohol use, and lack of physical exercise are the four long-term key risk factors for NCDs. Insufficient exercise or inactivity leads to an estimated 1.6 million deaths annually.

The WHO advises people to change the unhealthy lifestyle practices which lead to the development of NCDs. Also, NCDs can be managed with the help of detection, screening and treatment programmes.

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