Walking With Purpose
Though some people don’t think of walking as a form of exercise, did you know that it has a variety of health benefits? Walking has been proven to be so beneficial that Dr. Thomas Frieden, former director of the CDC, even stated it is “the closest thing we have to a wonder drug”. Still not convinced? According to Harvard Medical School, here are 4 ways that walking can directly benefit your health:
- It can reduce joint pain: Studies have shown that walking helps to protect the joints by lubricating and strengthening them. This can help reduce arthritis-related pain, especially in the knees and hips. It has also been shown that walking five to six miles a week can help prevent arthritis from forming in the first place.
- It helps with weight control: Not only does walking each day boost the metabolism and promote weight loss, but walking has been shown to directly affect obesity-promoting genes in the body. It can reduce their effects by approximately 50%! Additionally, studies have shown that walking can curb unhealthy cravings, especially sugary snacks.
- Reduces risk of breast cancer: Did you know that physical activity can decrease your risk of some cancers? A study done by the American Cancer Society found that women who walked seven or more hours a week had a 14% lower chance of developing breast cancer.
- It protects you from illness: Walking can help boost your immune system, which protects you from illness, especially during cold and flu season. Research has shown that people who walked at least 20 minutes a day had 43% fewer sick days than those who did not exercise regularly.
These are just a few of the many benefits walking can have on your health. Not to mention, walking is a wonderful way to get some fresh air and enjoy the nature! Here in Lynchburg, there are many beautiful places with walking paths and trails. For more information, check out the Lynchburg Trail Map here: https://www.lynchburgparksandrec.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/12/Creekside-Trail-Map-McBride.pdf