We know that physical activity helps to transfer blood glucose into the cells, but you may be surprised what a difference it can make.
The following research investigated that more in detail (Burns AM, et al., 2021).
The participants were 10 healthy 24-year-old men. Forearm glucose uptake was determined during a 180-minute oral glucose challenge before and after 24, 48 and 72 hours of immobilization of one forearm, and before and after 72 hours of the contralateral non-immobilized arm.
After 24 hours of immobilization the glucose uptake was reduced by 38% and even more by 48 hours. After 72 hours it was 63% less than the non-immobilized arm.
Muscle contraction is very important for glucose uptake.
Aisling M Burns, Aline Nixon, Joanne Mallinson, Sally M Cordon, Francis B Stephens, Paul L Greenhaff, Immobilization induces sizeable and sustained reductions in forearm glucose uptake in just 24 hours but does not change lipid uptake in healthy men, J Physiol. 2021 Feb 17.