With modern means of transport at our hands, we tend to neglect and even forget about the simple and beneficial everyday walking. Sure, the car is an effective provider of mobility, but does it contribute to our well-being in any way? Daily walking surely does, and countless of medical studies have proven the short-term, as well as the long-term prosperities the striding has on our health.
Developing a walking habit is beneficial to our body as well as the mind, besides, it is can be an amazing socializing experience when accompanied by the closest ones as well. If you haven’t yet developed a passion for hiking on the mountain trails, or simple venturing down the neighborhood, here in this article you will find 5 health benefits that will help you embrace the outside world in fullest capacity.
1. Lose weight with walking
Recommended daily calorie intake for women measures from 1800 to 2000 Kcal/day and for men it stands between 2000 and 2500 Kcal/day, depending on the age and current health status. However, even if a person follows these numbers provided by nutritionists, they still can represent a weight-gaining risk if the recreational levels remain low.
Walking is an excellent way of burning off consumed nutritional value that doesn’t require any special athletic skills. According to the research executed by the Harvard University and Women’s hospital in Boston the 34,000 female volunteers that ate a standard daily diet and walked for one hour a day were able to successfully keep control over their weight.
- TIP 1 : Try to reserve at least 30 minutes per day for walking because in such time period you will burn at least 200 Kcal.
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2. Regulate your blood pressure
High blood pressure is a common condition that people tend to underestimate, especially when it is still in stage 1 when the upper number on blood pressure measures from 140 to150 mm Hg and the lower one from 90 to 99 mm Hg. These numbers and every amount above them can cause damage to arteries, heart, brain and kidneys.
To prevent such serious health conditions you don’t need to indulge in heavy and intense workout routines that will only make you feel hopeless and devastated. A moderate walking pattern that slightly increases the heartbeat is, according to the study conducted at LawranceBerkely National Laboratory, just as effective as jogging when it comes to lowering high blood pressure.
- TIP: instead of indulging in one long walking session, try to divide it into ten-minute long periods spread throughout the whole day. This way you will ensure the long-lasting reduction of your heightened blood pressure.
3. Prevent dementia with walking
Dementia is a broad category of brain conditions and Alzheimer’s disease, as one of many types of dementia, is a 6th leading cause of death in the United States. Vitamin deficiency, thyroid issues, medication side effect, and depression, which we will discuss in following paragraphs, are just some of the conditions that may trigger the memory loss and thinking ability due to the damage of brain cells.
According to the Alzheimer’s Report in 2014, the regular exercises, such as walking, can easily prevent the onset and evolvement of dementia. Studies conducted at the University of Pittsburg also have proved that the walking, at least 5 miles per week, helps reduce the brain shrinkage caused by the death of brain cells.
- TIP: Instead of taking a drive to your local grocery store or work, try to replace your car with your feet as much as possible. Daily walking habit, which improves blood circulation and lowers the risks of getting a vascular disease, will help you lower the risk of cognitive loss.
4. Prevent osteoporosis with walking
Osteoporosis is a health condition usually caused by the lack of certain hormones, for instance, estrogen in women and androgen in men, or because of the deficit of vitamin D and calcium. These causes decrease the strength of bones which results in breakage of the bone tissue.
Walking is one of the simplest weight-bearing exercises that helps reduce the risks of developing this bone-thinning condition that makes bone fragile and that causes pain and inflammation of the joint. Experts from the University of California, San Francisco established that moderate daily aerobics help people preserve healthy cartilage.
- TIP: Deficit of vitamin D can manifest itself as osteoporosis. Food is a great source of this vitamin; however you can also prevent the deficiency with the help of sun rays that start the chemical reaction that converts prohormone, which is found in the skin, into vitamin D. In other words, daily walking will not only help you preserve your cartilage but also help you get your daily dose of sunlight.
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5. Boost your mood and get the control over the depression
The fast modern world doesn’t only burden us with daily trials that cause stress but also takes away our leisure time which can lead to the feeling of estrangement or depression. More and more people are suffering from “contemporary” mental conditions that have a negative impact on the internal balance.
A Portuguese study that was published in the Journal of Psychiatric Research has proven that walking helps fight symptoms of depression by boosting the mood and life momentum. In other words, adults that have been diagnosed with the state of low mind have, with the help of 30-minute daily walks, experienced improvement in thoughts, behaviour, and feelings.
- TIP: Overcome the feeling of loneliness and estrangement by organizing group expeditions in nature. The study that was published in Ecopsychology journal revealed the benefits such socializing experiences have on person’s mental well-being.
The fast modern world shows no mercy when it comes to having spare time that is necessary for developing habits beneficial for our bodies and minds. Walking is one of the only activities that can be easily fitted in even tightest schedules. Recreation in nature or on city streets for at least half an hour a day will give you countless benefits that willkeep your body robust and ready for conquering the approaching days.
- TIP: Simply put your career life on hold, hop on your feet and let each step become an investment into future.