1 in 10 or about 37 million Americans have diabetes, according to the CDC, with 90-95% of those being type 2 diabetes.
If unchecked, the damage that diabetes can do to the body is significant. Over time, high blood glucose levels can damage the organs and blood vessels of the body. This can lead to heart attack, stroke, and problems with the kidneys, nerves, eyes, feet, and gums. This is one of the many reasons why prevention and management of this disease are so vitally important.
A new study has found that exercise can help counter some of the damage of diabetes by activating a natural system in the body that can grow new blood vessels after the disease has destroyed existing ones.
How? Exercise can activate a process known as angiogenesis. This is our innate ability to grow new blood vessels. Diabetes damages blood vessels and often hinders the process of new growth, which leads to organ damage in time.
The researchers discovered that just one 45-minute session of high-intensity exercise set this process of angiogenesis in motion.
They looked at animal models and human volunteers over the age of 50. The mice ran on a wheel at different rates for two weeks, and the humans participated in just one cardio session. While the activity did not impact the weight of any of the subjects, the scientists observed an increase in essential factors needed for angiogenesis.
There was also an increase in the powerful natural antioxidants in the body, leading to healthier blood vessel activity.
They hope to create a medication as an “exercise mimetic” that could simulate the complicated chemical processes that occur when exercise helps to induce new blood vessel growth.
Or why don’t we add this to the increasingly stacked list of why exercise is so incredibly vital for our health and longevity. Just more motivation to get it into your healthy routine, whether diabetes is something you are dealing with or not!
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