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Sunday, February 28, 2016

Walk more for greater health benefits

Everyone knows that walking is good for you.  New studies have show how good walking is for your overall health.  If a short walk is good, is a longer walk better?  How much walking does one have to do to improve health?

How much walking is needed to improve health?
Sedentary is bad, walking is good, is a new way to look at activity.  A sedentary person who only walks about 1,000 steps a day who ups it to 3,000 steps a day can improve their health.  A study published in PLOS One, and highlighted in More Steps a day keep the doctor away, found that the more steps you do the greater the health benefits.  But even increasing walking from 1000 t0 3000 steps a day resulted in a 12% lowered mortality risk.   Those who met the goal of walking 10,000 steps a day lowered their mortality risk a whopping 46%. 
They determined this by tracking 3,000 Australians, average age of 58, for over 15 years.  The study participants wore a pedometer to track daily steps. 
In the nutrition class I teach, I emphasize how changing little habits can have big health effects.  No time to go for a walk, then at least park your car as far from the entrance as you can.   Going to class, park far away.  Going to work, park far away.  Going shopping, your car should be parked off in the distance.   There are many ways to increase steps.  Take the stairs, not the elevator.  Instead of sending an email to a co-worker, go to their office or cubicle. 

What about speed walking?
No time for a long walk?  Then fit in a fast/slow walk.  Read more about walking at: Walking Workouts.   This Fitness magazine website offers a number of ways to alter the intensity and pace of your walk.  Put an App on your Smart Phone to track not only steps but also your speed.  Read about recommended Aps at:  8 Best Pedometer Applications for iPhone.

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