Do you suffer from joint pain, heart problems, stress, depression, or obesity? Because, according to the journal Medicine and Science in Sport and Training, walking helps reduce the risk of all chronic diseases. In fact, most health professionals will prefer a quick walk to a run, as this is a low-stress exercise that spares the heart and joints.
Read on, and you will learn 20 properties of how walking affects health, if you do it daily - and go, no matter if you are 8 or 80!
Why daily walking is good for your health
1) 45 minutes of walking can help strengthen and tone the muscles of the legs and back and prevent muscle loss 2) 30 minutes of walking daily can help you lose weight, improve metabolism and gain lean muscle 3) 30 minutes of interval cardio can help lower blood pressure and save you from shortness of breath
1. Strengthens heart health
Walking helps improve heart health. Irish scientists say walking is the best exercise for sedentary individuals, especially adults, to reduce the risk of heart and vascular disease. In another study published in the Journal of the American Geriatric Society, scientists confirmed that men and women 65 years of age and older who walked at least 4 hours a week were less at risk for cardiovascular disease. So do not forget to walk at least 4 hours a week, so that stroke and other troubles with the heart bypass you.
2. Promotes weight loss
Walking is a great exercise to lose weight, it is so effective that it is hard to imagine. American scientists conducted an experiment in which obese patients went with each other (a concept called the “walking bus”) to where they usually traveled around the city by public transport. After 8 weeks, weight measurements were taken, and it turned out that more than 50% of the participants dropped an average of 5 pounds. You might also find it a good idea to go somewhere back and forth instead of getting in a car.
3. Regulates blood pressure
Walking can also lower blood pressure. Researchers from Wakayama Medical University, Japan, conducted an experiment in individuals with moderate hypertension, in which 83 patients took 10,000 steps every day for 12 weeks. By the end of 12 weeks, they had a significant decrease in blood pressure, as well as an improvement in endurance. Even if you can’t do 10,000 steps a day, walk a minimum of 60 minutes every day, and this will certainly benefit your pressure.
Learn more about how to lower blood pressure at home without the use of pharmaceuticals.
4. Fights cancer
Cancer has taken more than a million lives. One of the causes of cancer is a sedentary lifestyle, and walking can help you here. Scientists have found that by going out for a walk every day, you can reduce body weight and remove a few kg of fat, thereby reducing the risk of cancer. It turned out that it was not worth doubting whether walking those who are undergoing cancer treatment is useful, as it mitigates the side effects of chemotherapy. It can also reduce the risk of breast cancer.
5. Improves blood circulation
Believe it or not, walking can make you smarter by providing the brain with the necessary amount of oxygen and glucose, which will help it function better. It also lowers the level of LDL cholesterol that clogs the arteries, thereby increasing the risk of stroke. Thus, improves blood circulation, the functioning of the brain and cells.
6. Reduces the risk of diabetes
A sedentary lifestyle leads to an exponential growth of one of the most common diseases - diabetes. For people suffering from type 2 diabetes, scientists recommend doing 3,000 to 7,500 steps a day, sitting less, and generally being more active. Walking every day can help control your blood sugar, which in turn can help prevent type 2 diabetes.
7. Strengthens bones
Bones become more fragile with age. However, there is good news: daily walks can help you strengthen them. This low-stress exercise prevents the loss of bone density, thereby reducing the risk of osteoporosis, fractures and injuries. Since bones are the foundation of the body, stronger and healthier bones mean good posture, endurance and balance. Walking can also prevent arthritis and relieve concomitant pain.
8. Strengthens muscles
With age, a person loses not only in bone, but also in muscle mass. And here, too, walking can help you, because it strengthens and tones the muscles, and also prevents the loss of muscle mass. Regular walks can strengthen the muscles of your legs and back.
9. Improves digestion
Poor digestion can lead to discomfort in the intestines, bloating, constipation, diarrhea, and even colon cancer. Thus, it is very important to maintain the digestive system in order. To do this, you need to not only develop healthy gastronomic habits, drink more water, but also walk regularly. Walking after eating is wonderful. It will help you lose weight and also contribute to the digestion of food.
10. Enhances immunity
The body's immune system must always function properly to fight infections, diseases and death. Walking is a great way to strengthen your immune system. If you walk for at least 30 minutes a day, it can help activate immune cells, such as B cells, T cells, and natural killers. This stimulates faster production of white blood cell proteins, which allows the body to recover faster.
11. Prevents dementia
Dementia or dementia is a neurological condition characterized by a gradual loss of memory and cognitive function. Over time, it can make it impossible to do household chores and become completely dependent on others. Medium-rate daily walks can help prevent dementia, improve memory, and make an older person more confident.
12. Increases lung capacity
Walking can also increase lung capacity. When you walk, you breathe more oxygen compared to a state of rest. This increased exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide can affect lung volume, which also contributes to endurance and ability to perform physical exercises. The best thing about all this is that you don’t even need to run around for this. It’s enough to just walk at an average pace of 60 minutes (intermittently, of course!).
13. Slows down aging
A study of 17,000 Harvard graduates found that students who walked for at least 30 minutes each day lived longer than those who had a sedentary lifestyle. Walking is sometimes associated with the activation of the telomerase enzyme, which is responsible for maintaining the integrity of DNA, and is an important factor in the course of aging, but walking in any case has a beneficial effect on all problems associated with age-related changes in the body.
14. Helps Vitamin D Production
Walking in the morning is a great opportunity for the body to develop vitamin D. It is very important for strong bones, prevents cancer, multiple sclerosis and type 1 diabetes. So the best way to recharge them is to go out and walk for 10-15 minutes under the morning sun, without worrying that the body will be harmed.
In more detail about why vitamin D is needed and how to get it in sufficient quantity.
15. Relieves stress
Walking can help reduce stress by improving blood circulation, which in turn will provide cells with oxygen and nutrients. It also stimulates the receptors of the nervous system and reduces the production of stress hormones. Measured breathing while walking will also help you cope with excitement.
16. Cheers up
In several scientific studies, scientists have argued in favor of the idea that physical activity can help prevent depression. Walking is highly recommended by doctors and psychiatrists as a way to cheer up. So, if you feel depressed or sad, take a walk, breathe in fresh air, understand how useful it is and you will feel better.
17. Improves memory
Japanese scientists have found that walking has a beneficial effect on the memory status of elderly patients. Exercise helps to increase the size of the hippocampus, while a sedentary lifestyle reduces it, which leads to memory loss. Try to walk every day, this will greatly improve your memory.
18. Increases productivity
Regular walks can also make you more active and energetic. This, in turn, can increase your productivity. Walking is good for everything, whether it's school, work, memory, flexibility, or a reaction to various stimuli - all this will change for the better.
19. Gives a creative impetus
Walking can help you with creative stagnation. They calm the nerves and relax the brain. When you walk, you are not dominated by deadlines and the need to cater to someone's expectations. This helps to start thinking strategically and put everything in order. So if you are stuck with some kind of problem, take a walk!
20. Helps make new friends
Walking can help you find new friends, and perhaps new friends who will inspire you to walk every day, because you will want to meet them again. You can also go to social events. By the end of the day you will be charged with positive energy and peace.
From this list it is clear why walking is useful, it can strengthen your health in many ways, but what preparations must be made to start daily walks? Let's find out what might come in handy.
What do you need to start walking?
To start walking, you need a few basic things. Here is the list:
- Walking shoes
- Comfortable clothes
- Bottle of water and an energy bar for long walks
- If you decide to go to the office on foot, put on office clothes and a pair of comfortable shoes that you can change at work.
- Motivation - absolutely necessary at least in the first 5 days.
Below you will learn how to keep motivation for daily walks at a high level.
How to keep motivation for walking?
- Ask a friend to join you in your new lesson.
- Walk the dog in the morning or evening.
- Have a walk with your family or friends in the evening or after dinner.
- Walk to the nearest store or cafe.
- Think about how much money you can save if you walk.
- Use the planner to determine the best route for walking, measure heart pressure, calories burned, use a pedometer, etc.
- Explore different routes every day.
- Join a group of people involved in walking.
- Go hiking.
- Go to social events.
If you are new to walking, it will be difficult to overcome long distances immediately. Therefore, break the walk into stages. Start with 10 minutes every day. Gradually increase their duration to 30 minutes. Then you can walk 30 minutes in the afternoon and 30 minutes in the evening. You should also gradually increase the walking speed. When you get comfortable, try walking at least 10,000 steps a day. If necessary, take breaks in the process. And, of course, do not forget to drink water. Here you will find out how much water you need to drink every day to maintain health.
Now that we have made your task easier by telling you what the benefits of walking every day and all the health benefits are, all you need to do is go for a walk, maintain motivation: put on comfortable shoes and go outside, it will be much more useful than sit at home and watch TV. Good luck!