While it's well known that regular exercise can lower mortality rate, a recent study published in the journal JAMA Network Open examined the health benefits of walking intensively for a few days a week. The researchers from Kyoto University and the University of California, Los Angeles analysed data from 3,100 American adults, as reported by AFP.
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The study showed that those who walked 8,000 steps or more one or two days a week were 14.9% less likely to die over a 10-year period compared to those who did not reach this mark. Those who walked 8,000 steps or more three to seven days a week had lower mortality risk of about 16.5 percent and the health benefits for people aged 65 years or above also appeared higher.
For the study, daily step counts from 3,100 participants in 2005 and 2006 were used. Among the participants, 632 took 8,000 steps or more zero days a week, 532 took 8,000 steps or more one to two days a week and 1,937 took 8,000 or more steps three to seven days a week, as reported by AFP.
A previous study published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine in February 2023 showed that that 11 minutes a day of moderate-intensity physical activity such as a brisk walk could lower the risk of diseases such as heart disease, stroke and a number of cancers, according to Science Daily.
"We know that physical activity, such as walking or cycling, is good for you, especially if you feel it raises your heart rate. But what we've found is there are substantial benefits to heart health and reducing your risk of cancer even if you can only manage 10 minutes every day," said Professor James Woodcock from the MRC Epidemiology Unit who was part of the research team.