Need a little extra motivation to get up and moving? A new study from the University of Florida in the US has found that low levels of physical activity are associated with higher blood glucose levels in adults who are of a healthy weight. The university's findings may help to explain why as many as one-third of adults who are not overweight or obese have pre-diabetes -- a precursor to type 2 diabetes.
"We have found that a lot of people who we would consider to be at healthy weight are not metabolically healthy," says lead investigator Arch G. Mainous III, Ph.D of the participants in the study. These people may have "healthy weight obesity," which is also known as "skinny fat". This condition is marked by having a high amount of fat in relation to lean muscle -- in men, this is typically more than 25 per cent body fat, while in women, it is typically 35 per cent body fat. People with "skinny fat" have an elevated risk of developing metabolic syndrome, which can also increase your risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
As screening guidelines for pre-diabetes and type 2 diabetes typically target adults who are overweight or obese, people who fall into the healthy weight range may go undetected -- even though they already have dangerously high blood glucose levels. To assess your risk, make an appointment with your GP and give your body a healthy boost by aiming to get 40 minutes of exercise each day. Try getting more steps into your day by amping up your incidental exercise factor, too. And diabetes-proof your future by giving your lifestyle a healthy makeover. Your body will thank you!