Initial findings of research part-funded by Diabetes UK were presented today at the 24th European Congress on Obesity, indicating the impact of physical inactivity on health.
The University of Liverpool researchers tracked lifestyle, physical activity and sleep in 28 active people who cut their steps from around 10,000 to 1,500 per day while keeping their diet the same.
After just two weeks, the reduced physical activity was found to have negative effects on the body, such as lower muscle mass, higher fat levels and a drop in cardio-respiratory fitness.
"Changes in the body could start after only two weeks of inactivity"
Dr Emily Burns, Research Communications Manager at Diabetes UK, said: "We know that being physically inactive can increase the risk of Type 2 diabetes. While we need to wait for the full results, this research suggests that changes inside the body could start after only two weeks of inactivity.
"It's very important that we understand what happens when we cut out simple daily activities, so we can find the best ways to reduce the risk of Type 2 for everyone. We can all find ways to include physical activity in our daily life – even walking to work or using stairs."
Funding diabetes research is one of our priorities, to help us understand more about all types of diabetes and get closer to finding a cure. Currently only half a penny is spent on research for every £1 spent on diabetes care.
Want to walk more? Our 1 Million Step challenge is one way to meet the 10,000 steps per day recommended to maintain good health.