To see noticeable results, many Canadians think that they need to partake in grueling exercise on an almost daily basis. While regular exercise is certainly good for your health, it doesn’t have to be as demanding as you might think.
Dr. Ali Ghahary, a family physician from Vancouver, says that as little as 30 minutes of walking each day can be one of the best workouts you’ll ever get. Not only does walking help you lose weight, but there are a myriad of other ways in which walking can improve your health.
For example, walking cannot only reduce the risk of diabetes, but it can also help those who already have diabetes by reducing your blood sugar levels. When we walk, we tend to breathe heavier and our heart is forced to beat faster. As a result, our muscles are then required to use more glucose, and this can decrease your blood sugar levels over time. Studies have shown that individuals who walk for at least 30 minutes per day have slashed their risk of diabetes by as much as 30% compared to individuals who exercise less frequently.
Walking can also help to control or reduce high blood pressure. For example, being more physically active can decrease your systolic blood pressure level by as much as 4 to 9 mm Hg, which is almost the equivalent of certain blood pressure medications. By keeping fit, your heart won’t have to work as hard, which decreases the force on your arteries. Having high blood pressure can increase your risk of heart attack and stroke, and can even contribute to kidney disease.
Walking doesn’t just have physical benefits, however. There are also mental benefits to walking and other methods of physical activity, too. By keeping fit, this allows us to modify our nervous system, and you can notice a decrease in things like anxiety, moodiness, and stress levels.