Many people will tell you that one of the best forms of exercise you can get is a good, brisk walk. According to information from Iowa State University, a good walk not only has a long list of health benefits but puts much less stress on your joints than running or jogging (as with other exercises, however, it is still advised that you stretch). These benefits include your life being extended by up to two minutes for every minute that you walk. What is it that makes this simple, accessible form of exercise beneficial?
Here are just a few of the benefits of walking.
According to Iowa State University, an extra 20 minutes of daily walking will help you drop seven pounds of weight annually. While that may not seem like much, it can add up if you walk enough. The same information adds that walking for 40 minutes while working your heart rate up to between 60 and 65 percent of its maximum capacity is the best way to walk for weight loss.
According to one online source, a person can potentially burn 75 calories merely by walking two miles per hour for half an hour. This can exponentially increase to 150 calories during a four-mile-per-hour walk.
The Iowa State University data also states that walking for between 20 and 25 minutes while raising your heart rate to between 75 and 85 percent of its maximum capacity is great for conditioning the heart and lungs. Getting the circulatory system moving is also good for lowering cholesterol and preventing heart disease. One source states that a quick 30 minute walk can reduce your chances for a stroke by up to 27 percent. Proper posture while you walk can rotate a variety of body parts and tighten your muscles. According to one study, women that walked for at least three hours each week reduced the risk of a heart attack by 35 percent when compared to those that didn’t. Another study indicated that men of retirement age that walked two miles each day had a significantly lower mortality rate than those that walked less than a mile.
Information from one online source states that staying active will reduce your risk for certain of cancer by 20 percent. According to one study, women who walked for between about one and two-and-a-half hours each week were 18 percent less likely to develop breast cancer than women that did not walk. According to the British Medical Journal, it can also prevent diabetes. Walking can help reduce the risk for diabetes by 60 percent. According to another online source, walking 150 miles per week can not only help you lose weight but can reduce you your chances of getting diabetes by 58 percent.
Improves Bone Density
One source states that because waking involving carrying weight, it stimulates and strengthens your bones. According to one study, women that had been through menopause that walked one mile each day had higher bone density throughout their bodies than those that didn’t.