Guilt Trip

19 September, 2012

Although it won't negate the harm done, that bout of physical activity can act as a form of damage control, according to research. Eating high-fat meals inhibits artery function and reduces blood flow, both of which increase the risk of cardiovascular disease. A brisk 45-minute walk or other cardiovascular exercise can help offset the potential artery damage of the meal -- but not all of it. So don't make this guilt trip a habit.

Eating a diet high in fat, especially the unhealthy saturated type, can make you feel older. But most people do indulge once in a while; if you do, it's nice to know that mild to moderate exercise may help thwart some of the negative effects on your arteries. That's what results from a small study of young, healthy adults suggest.

Participants ate either high-fat or low-fat meals to see how the foods affected artery function. Artery function was much better after the participants ate the low-fat meal compared to when they ate the high-fat one. But when participants walked briskly for 45-minutes 2 hours after eating the high-fat meal, artery function improved.

The moral of the story: Don't eat high-fat meals. But if you do, don't skip your workout that day -- hit the gym for at least 45 minutes.

SOURCES: The effect of acute exercise on endothelial function following a high-fat meal. Padilla, J., Harris, R. A., Fly, A. D., Rink, L. D., Wallace, J. P., European Journal of Applied Physiology 2006 Oct;98(3):256-262.

« previous post   |   next post »