Why exercising in the morning and at night
Researchers have reported that exercise in the morning and at night may be associated with a lower risk of developing diabetes.
They also discovered that exercise with more intensity could be more beneficial against the disease.
Experts aren’t sure how often you exercise is important, however risk-protection elements could be influenced by biological or lifestyle factors.
Exercise is strongly linked to decreasing the chance of developing Type 2 Diabetes. However, the level of protection can vary depending on the time and method you exercise.
The study that was published this morning in Diabetologia concluded that, while exercising either in the morning or in the afternoon appears to lower the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, this did not apply to exercise in the evening.
The research led by Dr. Caiwei Tian of Harvard University and Dr. Chirag Patel of Harvard Medical School in Massachusetts, discovered that those who had more hours of measured physical activities were less likely to get type 2 diabetes.
“The consistency or routine of physical activity was not strongly associated with type 2 diabetes,” the study’s authors concluded. “In other words, individuals who exercise a smaller amount of time more frequently are at no lesser risk for diabetes than individuals who exercise the same total amount, but with less of a routine.”
It was conducted upon data from the 93,095 UK Biobank participants who did not have a history of type 2 diabetes. They used an accelerometer for one week to track their physical exercise. The tasks included chores, walking and intense exercise.
The risk assessment for diabetes was modified to reflect factors that affect the way we live, such as eating habits and sleep.
Join other subscribers to receive our daily diabetes newsletter for practical tips to eat well, information on recent breakthroughs in research, and much more.
The timing of the exercise appears to be a factor
Researchers monitored activity based on the metabolic equivalent of tasks (MET) hours. They discovered that for every one unit increment in MET hours of physical activity, the type 2 diabetes risk fell by 10% in the in the morning (6 a.m. until noon) activity, and 9 percent for afternoon (noon until 6:30 p.m.) activities.
The same correlation did not exist for the evening (6 p.m. until midnight) activities. However, there was no correlation for evening activity.
“The timing of activity may play a role in mitigation of diabetes risk,” the study’s authors wrote. “The findings also suggest it is helpful to include some higher intensity activity to help reduce the risk of developing diabetes and other cardiovascular disease.”
“It’s pretty well known that physical activity is associated with less risk for cardiovascular disease and diabetes,” Patel explained to Medical News Today. “Some of the literature also suggest that timing matters.”
Patel stated that it was not clear what the reason was for why exercise in the evening appeared to be less protective. It could be due to factors that are not considered or emphasized in the study’s design, like social or lifestyle differences.
The difference between exercise in the morning and evening
Future studies could also investigate what’s known as the “intersection with people’s chronotype” and whether they are “morning people” or “night owls” — as well as particular biological differences the researcher explained.
“One possible explanation for this finding is that morning and afternoon physical activity may help regulate the circadian rhythm, which is the body’s natural clock that influences various biological processes, including metabolism, hormone secretion, and sleep quality,” Dr. Alex Foxman, the medical director of Achieve Health and Weight Loss Achieve Health and Weight Loss, a comprehensive weight loss program. “By contrast, evening physical activity may disrupt the circadian rhythm and impair glucose tolerance, especially if it is done close to bedtime.”
“Another possible explanation is that morning and afternoon physical activity may reduce the amount of time spent in sedentary behaviors, such as sitting or lying down, which are known to increase the risk of type 2 diabetes,” Foxman explained to Medical News Today.