Did this January find you joining a gym, buying a piece of exercise equipment, or ordering some new workout videos? Most of us “exercise” the best intentions as we begin the New Year, but even our truest intent can begin to fade with each page of the calendar that we turn.

I want to give you a new motivation to move on purpose throughout the year that’s sure to last—one which is based on more than good intentions—it’s based on good research.

There’s an epidemic in our midst that’s picking up speed. It steals health, fills hospitals, and ends lives. It’s name? Insulin resistance. Insulin is the hormone that your body produces to regulate your blood sugar. When you begin to build a resistance (or defiance) to your own insulin, trouble moves right in. Heart disease, type 2 diabetes, dementia, and certain cancers are some of its fingerprints on your health.

Insulin resistance is something that typically happens over time, though in our children’s generation, more frequently it’s found to occur before they’ve even graduated elementary school! Recently I was stunned to learn that  1 in 3 adults over 20 have lost control over their blood sugar (as a result of insulin resistance) rendering them pre-diabetic or diabetic. Even more shocking is the fact that a full 70% of those who are affected don’t know! How can you know if you are insulin resistant? Look down. Do you see a significant belly bulge? If so, you’re likely already “on board” this disease train.

If you want to fight off, or fight back against insulin resistance then you must “move on purpose” every week. Physical exercise reactivates one of the “dulled” responders to blood sugar regulation, the insulin receptors located on your muscle cells. All it takes is 30 minutes of participation in an activity which increases your heart rate to the point of being “breathy” when you talk. So go for a walk, dance around to your favorite tunes, or clean your house like there’s no tomorrow—to ensure that there will indeed be many healthier tomorrows!

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