Everyone is aware of the various benefits of regular exercise, and its effects on an emotional, physical and mental health, but very often, people simply don’t have enough time to hit the gym and workout.
However, you no longer have excuses, as a recent investigation has shown that a person needs only 15-minute walk a day to reap all the health benefits. Mainly, this healthy habit can add seven years to your life and enhance your health in various ways.
According to Sanjay Sharma, professor of inherited cardiac diseases in sports cardiology at St. George’s University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust in London:
“We may never avoid becoming completely old, but we may delay the time we become old. We may look younger when we’re 70 and may live into our nineties. Exercise buys you three to seven additional years of life. It is an antidepressant, it improves cognitive function, and there is no evidence that it may retard the onset of dementia.”
Scientists from Harvard studied the effects of walking on cardiovascular health and determined that:
— walking nine miles per week reduced the death rate by a whopping 22 %.
-walking for only 30 minutes a day caused 18 % risk reduction of coronary artery disease.
— walking for a total of three hours a week lower the risk of cardiovascular death by 35 % and 34 % heart attack and stroke.
Here are few of the benefits of walking every day:
- It can reduce the risk of diabetes
The conclusions from the Harvard Nurses’ Health Study revealed that women that walked for half an hour a day experienced a 30% lower risk of diabetes. Walking also helped in reduction of abdominal fat, which consequently led to a lower risk of diabetes.
- It reduces the risk of Alzheimer’s disease
Scientists at the University of Virginia Health System determined that men at the age of 71 – 93, who walked more than a 1/4 of a mile a day had half the percentage of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia in contrast to participants who walked less.
Scientists found that medium intensity walking reduces the risk of high blood pressure.
- It improves digestion
A physical therapist at Cancer Treatment Center in America Mrs Tara Aleichem maintains that walking can improve your gastric movement.
- It decreases pain and improves mobility
The American Heart Association wrote an article that pointed that walking on a daily basis can enhance mobility in people with PAD (peripheral artery disease).
People who exercise regularly have healthier and strong teeth, and regular exercise boosts bone density, strengthens the bones and reduces the risk of osteoporosis, fractures, and shrinkage of the spine.
- It enhances cognitive performance
Studies have revealed that a regular walk raises the cognitive performance in both children and adults.
- Leads to longevity
Various studies have proven that regular walking lowers the risk of mortality.
- It improves mood
A study from 2016 revealed that walking at least 20 minutes a day boosts the self-confidence and attentiveness, and also reduces the feelings of anger and hostility.
Here are some useful walking tips:
-Pick a proper pace, and maintain around 3.5 miles walking an hour.
-To get better results and burn more calories, tackle an incline walk
-Always wear elastic, low-heeled, soft, comfortable footwear
-Walk with the shoulders resting, the chin parallel to the ground looking straight ahead
-Swing the arms while exercising, bend them at 90 degrees and engage the shoulders
-Take the stairs rather then the elevator
-Walk on the way to school or work
-Don’t forget the short walks after dinner or lunch with friends
-Get off few bus stops earlier and start walking for the rest
-Always park your car some distance from your destination.
-Try standing and walking at your meetings at work.
-Take your puppy for a regular walk
-Listen to your favourite music and walk
“While you’re getting in the habit of a daily walk, choose a spot that’s suitable for barefoot walking – like a grassy park or sandy beach – and give it a try. In addition to the physical benefits of walking, walking barefoot allows your body to absorb free electrons from the Earth through the soles of your feet, a practice known as grounding.
These electrons have powerful antioxidant effects that can protect your body from inflammation and its many well-documented health consequences. For example, one scientific review published in the Journal of Environmental and Public Health concluded that grounding (walking barefoot on the earth) could improve many health conditions, including the following:
Sleep disturbances, including sleep apnea
Chronic muscle and joint pain, and other types of pain
Asthmatic and respiratory conditions
Immune system activity and response
Heart rate variability
Primary indicators of osteoporosis
Fasting glucose levels among people with diabetes
I recommend using a pedometer, or better yet, one of the newer wearable fitness trackers, to keep track and find out how far you usually walk. At first, you may be surprised to realise just how little you move each day.
Tracking your steps can also show you how simple and seemingly minor changes to the way you move around during the day can add up. Plus, it’s motivating to see your steps increase throughout the day.”
If you enjoyed this article and found it informative, don’t forget to SHARE it on Facebook!