The Benefits of Walking

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Live longer

Research shows you are likely to live longer if you walk at least 5.5 miles per week.

Walking this much at a slow pace of 2 miles per hour can be enough to lower your risk of things like heart attacks, strokes, and heart failure by 31%. Do you know people who walked farther and faster got even more benefit? It is the fact. So go for it.

Cut risk of stroke

Women who walk 30 minutes a day may cut their risk of stroke by 20% – 40%. Just a little walk can do wonders to help your blood move through your body the way it should. Any time you can spend walking is good, but push yourself a little. Getting your heart rate up can strengthen it and lower your blood pressure as well.

Overall health

Walking 10,000 steps is about 5 miles, which is a good goal for overall health. If you cannot quite make that, any walking do helps. You can work your way up slowly. Use a pedometer to count your steps, and try to kick it up by at least 500 each week.

Cardio Credit

Brisk walking counts as cardio exercise. Ideally, you should log at least 150 minutes of exercise that raises your heart rate every week. Walking can definitely count toward this goal. You do not need any special equipment (except a decent pair of shoes), and you can do it practically anywhere. Nevertheless, to get cardio credit, you have to do more than stroll around the house room to room. Pick up the pace to make the better health.

Strengthen heart

For years, many experts the best way to strengthen your heart is by pushing to rise up your heart rate. However, it turns out that brisk walking is just as good when it comes to cutting the risk of high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and diabetes — as long as you do enough of it.

Lose weight

You should do about 300 minutes of brisk walking each week if you want to lose weight. It might sound like a lot, but you can break it down to about 45 minutes if you are serious about shaping up. However, if your schedule is packed, you can burn just as many calories with 20 minutes of exercise called high-intensity interval training (HIIT); for example: 20 seconds of an energetic activity, like running, followed by 1 minute of recovery (walking). This jump-starts your metabolism so your body can burn more fat.

Taking your dog for a half-hour walk, you probably burn about 100 calories for a person who weighs 150 pounds. Although everyone burns calories at a different, the idea is the same.

Boost your mood

Try taking a walk in a leafy natural area to boost your mood. According to Scientists at Stanford University, they asked people to walk 90 minutes in either a woodsy area or an urban one. Those who strolled in nature had less activity in an area of the brain linked to depression. That supports earlier studies that showed the people who live in cities tend to have more mental health issues, like anxiety and mood disorders, than the people who live in the country.

Lower risk in getting cancer

Exercise like walking lowers your risk of breast cancer because it lowers the estrogen in your bloodstream. Women, who are active, are 30% to 40% less likely to get breast cancer. Women and men, who walk briskly or do other physical activities regularly, are also much less likely than others to have colon cancer. To cut your cancer risk, try to walk at least 30 minutes almost every day.

Help with type-2 diabetes

Walking is good for people who have type-2 diabetes because it lowers blood sugar levels, helps your body use sugar, and helps to lose weight. Exercise helps the hormone insulin gets sugar out of your bloodstream and into your cells, where it can be used for energy. That can lower your risk of complications from diabetes, like nerve damage and kidney disease. A 10-minute walk after each meal is good enough to do the trick.

Improve arthritis

If you have arthritis, you should walk regularly. For starters, your joint fluid moves around when you walk. It helps to get oxygen and nutrients to the joints and cartilage that helps to prevent friction. It also strengthens your leg and core muscles. When your muscles do more of the work, your joints hurt less. A regular walk may also help you slim down, and a thinner body means less pressure on your joints.

Help to ease lower back pain

If you have back pain, you should walk 20 to 40 minutes two or three times a week. Most doctors recommend physical therapy for people who have chronic lower back pain. While that can help, walking can be just as effective. Nevertheless, you can do it anytime without a referral from a doctor.

Good for bones

Walking is good for your bones because it is weight-bearing exercise. Exercises that make you bear the weight of your own body against gravity are important because they stress your bones, which leads them to make more cells and become more solid. Other exercises that are good for your bones include high-impact activities, like jumping rope, stretching, and strength training with weights. However, you should always consult with your doctor about what is best and safe exercise for you.

Reference: WebMD

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