Walking daily is a great way to boost your overall health. Yes, a simple, low-impact exercise like walking has the power to help you improve your health both physically and mentally. There’s no need for a complex workout routine or intense training. If you just go for a little stroll on a constant basis, you can prevent and fix a wide range of health-related problems.
Walking is a type of exercise recommended by many physicians and psychiatrists, because it is quite easy to do and it generates a multitude of physical and mental benefits. Here’s how a taking a walk every day can help you enjoy a better quality of life:
Keeps Your Heart Healthy
You do want to keep your heart healthy, right? Well, in this case it’s good to know that a simple activity like going for a walk can have tremendous benefits. According to medical studies, walking has the potential of preventing a series of cardiovascular diseases. The findings suggest that a progressive increase of the daily steps taken can bring short-term benefits like improved blood pressure and fitness level, as well as long-term ones, such as reducing the chances of coronary heart disease.
Diabetes is a disease associated, among others, with the lack of physical activity. Studies have shown that regular exercise has the potential of treating prediabetes and preventing type 2 diabetes. According to researchers at the University of Colorado and University of Tennessee, walking on a constant basis can reduce the blood sugar level by almost 11 points and implicitly the overall risk of a chronic disease as diabetes.
Helps You Lose Weight
In order to lose weight you don’t necessarily have to hit the gym and get on that treadmill. You don’t even have to run at a certain pace in the park. All you have to do is walk more. Yes, it’s true: a simple, easy-to-do exercise like walking can help you lose those unwanted pounds. Daily walking can help you become slimmer and fitter not only by burning those extra calories, but also by maintaining a lean muscle mass.
Strengthens Bones and Muscles
If you go for a stroll daily, you have higher chances of keeping your bones healthy. Periodical walking can help you maintain your bone mass, lower the risk of osteoporosis, improve your posture and your balance in order to prevent a fall and can also delay the appearance of certain types of arthritis. At the same time, walking is beneficial to your muscles. This activity prevents muscle loss and strengthens and preserves leg and back muscles.
Improves Mental Health
A daily stroll can bring not only physical, but also mental gains. There is a strong connection between physical exercise and mental health and this is a proven by a recent study. According to scientists, people who engage in a simple activity like walking have fewer days of bad mental health in comparison to those who lead a sedentary lifestyle. So go ahead, get going instead of laying on the couch and you’ll surely feel the difference in the long run.
You’re most surely familiar with that saying that you should take a walk after you’ve eaten. Well, medical studies have shown that it’s truly beneficial. Taking a walk after a meal can improve your digestion by accelerating the movement of food through your stomach and by reducing the blood sugar levels. So if you want to preserve a healthy digestive system, make sure to develop healthy nutrition habits, stay hydrated and walk more.
Strengthens the Immune System
Your immune system can be weakened by a lot of factors. One of these factors is the lack of physical activity. Developing a walking routine can help you boost your immunity. When you walk your body releases a series of antibodies and natural killer cells, which ensure protection against tumors, infections and viruses.
In plain terms, endorphins are regarded as the “feel-good” chemicals produced in our body. A higher level of endorphins is linked with an overall state of happiness, with pleasure and better focus. One of the ways you can increase the presence of these natural chemicals is to be more physically active. A simple walk can help you release endorphins and get that “feel-good” effect.
Reduces Stress Level
During an exercise or a walk, stress hormones like adrenaline and cortisol are considerably lowered. Walking has the potential of helping you better cope with stressful situations. A simple stroll, preferably in a park, garden or forest rather than an urban setting, will allow you to think more clearly, reconnect with your body and relieve the stress.
Scientific studies have shown that regular walking can be an effective solution in order to lower depression. Don’t underestimate the power of a walk, because it has been proven it can lift your spirits when you’re feeling depressed or sad. Just get out of the house, walk at your right pace and take in that fresh air.
Don’t Forget to Track your Steps
Once you start walking regularly, it’s advisable to monitor your physical activity: the distance you covered, the steps taken, the active time or the calories burned in a certain period of time. This way you can compare results, understand your progress and remain motivated to move more.
In order to track your activity you can resort to an app like ActivityTracker for instance. It’s quite easy to use, allows you to see detailed stats for your activity and it doesn’t drain your phone’s battery, because it doesn’t use GPS. You could also resort to a wearable device to monitor your activity. The downside, in addition to the extra cost, is that you have to carry it with you on purpose and remember to charge it.
As a conclusion, there are numerous reasons why you should consider beginning walking more. As research has shown, this is a great way to become healthier not only from a physical, but also mental point of view. We’ve done our job, we’ve told you all the benefits, all you have to do now is step outside and take a walk.