One of the most powerful and underrated ways to lose weight, stay healthy and live longer is an activity we do every day – walking. Even walking for an average of only 30 minutes a day can have huge health benefits, such as lowering your risk of stroke by 35% and Type 2 diabetes by 40%. The best thing about walking is that it’s free and easy to fit into your daily routine.
Here are some benefits of walking from the home doctor experts at House Call Doctor.
It can help you manage your weight
Walking is a great way to burn calories. This will depend on a few factors, including your walking speed, distance covered, terrain and your weight. Interval walking is a great way to burn the most calories. For example, you can experiment with walking fast for a minute and then cool down for two minutes until you reach 30 minutes total.
It can improve your mood
Walking can greatly improve your mental health. Aim for 30 minutes of brisk walking to help reduce anxiety, depression and a negative mood. It can also boost your self-esteem and reduce symptoms of social withdrawal.
It can ease joint pain
Walking regularly can help protect the joints, such as your knees and hips, through strengthening the muscles that support these areas. It can also benefit those living with arthritis, through reducing pain.
It can boost your energy
When you’re tired, going for a walk can be a more effective energy boost than drinking a cup of coffee. Walking increases oxygen flow through the whole body and can also increase levels of cortisol, epinephrine and norepinephrine which are hormones that help elevate energy levels.
It can help you feel more creative
Along with improving your mood, walking can help clear your head and help you think creatively.
Tips for staying safe while walking:
- Walk in areas that are well-lit
- If you walk in the dark, consider wearing a reflective vest or light so cars can see you
- Wear stable, sturdy shoes with good heel and arch support
- Drink plenty of water
- Wear comfortable clothing
- Wear sunscreen to prevent sunburn.