They say walking is good for health. Let’s look at why:
Maintain body weight: Walking daily helps us maintain our body weight and burn calories to the average level, thus preventing obesity.
A 30-minute daily walk reduces LDL (low-density lipoprotein) and increases the level of HDL (high-density lipoproteins) in our body and makes us healthy and physically active.
Boosts immune function: Nowadays, building one’s immunity is very important to fight infections. Walking may reduce the risk of developing a cold or flu.
A study tracked 1,000 adults during flu season who walked at a moderate pace for 30 – 45 minutes a day were 43% less sick and had fewer upper respiratory tract infections overall.
Eases joint pain: Walking helps protect the joints, especially the knees and hips. This is because it helps lubricate and strengthen the muscles that support the joints. Walking also provides benefits for people with arthritis.
Strengthen the heart: Walking is useful, especially for heart patients, to make them physically fit without any strenuous activity. A 30 minutes walk a day can reduce the risk for coronary heart disease by about 19%, and the risk may decrease even more when increased the duration or distance of walk per day.
Reduces blood sugar levels: A small study found that taking a 15-minute walk three times a day (after breakfast, lunch, and dinner) improved blood sugar levels more than a 45-minute walk at another point during the day. More research is needed to confirm these findings, though. We can consider making a post-meal walk a regular part of the routine.
Boost your energy: Going for a walk when tired may be a more effective energy boost than relaxing and grabbing a cup of coffee. Walking increases the oxygen flow in the body and increases cortisol levels, epinephrine, and norepinephrine. These hormones help elevate energy levels.
Improve your mood: Walking can help deal with stressful situations. Studies show it can help reduce anxiety, depression, and a negative mood. It can also boost self-esteem and reduce symptoms of social withdrawal.
Extend your life: Walking could increase your life span; researchers found that walking at an average pace compared to a slow pace resulted in a 20% reduced risk of overall death.
A daily walk is also useful to lower the risk of cancer, especially colon cancer in both sexes, while among males, the risks of prostatic hyperplasia could also be reduced.
Tone your legs: Walking is said to strengthen the muscles in your legs.
It is suggested to avoid walking with other cross-training activities like cycling or jogging. One can also perform resistance exercises like squats, lunges, and leg curls to further tone and strengthen your leg muscles.
Creative thinking: Walking may activate the brain and help you think creatively.
A study that included four experiments in which researchers found participants did better while walking, particularly outdoors. The researchers concluded that walking opens up a free flow of ideas and is a simple way to increase creativity and get physical activity simultaneously.
Other factors like healthy eating, no smoking, and cleanliness are also associated with causing health effects to our bodies.
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