The most common and ordinary thing that a human being can do is walking. Unless we are somehow physically impaired, we humans, take this for granted. We are here today to talk about a French study which suggests that we should pay more attention to the benefits that walking has to offer. This is very true, especially as we age.
The Benefits of Walking
The study which was conducted showed that over the course of the 12 years, walking had a tremendous effect on adults over 65. The rate of mortality was reduced by 22% in 12 years due to 15 minutes of walking a day. What is more, the percent was even higher with longer walks and more frequent walks.
The lead researcher claimed that age was not an excuse to not do any exercise. It is actually proven that regular physical activity has a great effect on the overall health. It is even more than any other medical treatment. However, less than half of the older adults achieve the recommended minimum of 150 minutes moderate immensity or 75 minutes vigorous intensity exercise each week.
All of this should not come as a surprise because this is very basic to us. Walking has been studied a lot for its effects on a lot of human conditions. A lot of people do not consider walking an aerobic exercise. That is why they ignore it and its benefits.
An aerobic exercise is actually an exercise which stimulates the heart and the respiratory rates to pump additional oxygen to muscles. Even a small stroll can achieve this. Thus, the faster you walk, the more aerobic is the activity.
Therefore, increased cardiovascular, respiratory, and circulatory operations mean that nutrients will go where they must, to support the exercise. Energy, on the other hand, is used, rather than stored, and your organs, muscles, and bones are strengthened. Our bodies are actually meant for movement.
What this means is that a sedentary lifestyle is without a doubt a causer of illness. The routine low levels of physical activity caused an increase of what is called ‘sedentary death syndrome.’ This is actually a very real condition. It has been deemed ‘a major public health burden due to its causing multiple chronic diseases and millions of premature deaths each year.’
Moreover, if you do not use it, you will lose it. This refers to everything, stemming from muscle strength to cognition.
For All Walks of Life
A study which was conducted in 2016, found out that if we increase the amount of walking for obese children to 45 minutes a day, 5 days a week, their lung capacity will be increased in just 6 weeks. Also, interval training is not only for high-impact aerobic exercise. You will improve your fitness level more effectively if you walk fast interspersed with a slow walk more than if you do it at a continual pace.
Moreover, if you walk outside it will be better. This is because it will have a supportive effect on your mental health as well. If you stay away from electronics and other distractions, natural surroundings can decrease stress, and lower feelings of depression.
Also, sunshine will nourish you with vitamin D. Vitamin D deficiency is becoming the most epidemic one in the industrial world. Also, walking indoors can be quite as good, too. A study at the Stanford university has found out that if you walk on a treadmill while facing a blank wall it can be as creative as being outside. This means that it does not matter whether you are indoors or outdoors. Walking is definitely beneficial and it is better than sitting all the time.
Like a Walk in the Park
Naturally, when something hurts us, we do not want to touch it. Therefore, regular exercise improves mobility and it reduces the risk of injury. Actually, any type of exercise, including walking, will strengthen our bones and connective tissues. This will in turn increase blood and nutrient supplies. In this case, the Arthritis Foundation recommends walking for these reasons. Because, if you do not walk, your joints will be deprived of life-giving fluid. Thus, this will speed up the deterioration.
This is why the American Heart Association advocates walking. It can lower the risk of high cholesterol, hypertension, stroke, and diabetes. Also, they recommend 30 minutes of physical activity a day minimum, to a total of at least 150 minutes of moderate, or 75 minutes of vigorous activity a week. This way the protective effects of the exercise will be realized. The exercise, does not have to be all at once. For example, walking, the most basic one, can be consisted out of two 15-minute walks, instead of a whole one of 30 minutes. You can just start slowly until you build up your endurance.
Also, walking helps immensely if you have trouble sleeping, too. There was a study that discovered that if you do some moderate-intensity aerobic exercise like walking, this will reduce the time it takes you to fall asleep. It will also increase the length of sleep of people who have been suffering from insomnia. This is a very impressive result, especially after one walk only.
An analysis from 7 countries with an average duration of 11 years found out that walking decreased the incidence of cardiovascular events. It did so by 31% and it decreased mortality risk by 32%. If you walk just as little as 5.5 miles a week at 2mph it will protect you from a lot of serious diseases.
As you can clearly see walking is very beneficial and everyone can do it. Not everyone can exercise in a gym, or run, or go up a flight of stairs. Yet, we can all walk. And, because it does offer a lot of benefits, just find a descent pair of shoes, or a partner if you want to. Then, start walking 15 minutes a day, it will change your life.