A STEP in the RIGHT DIRECTION | Pocketmags.com

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A STEP in the RIGHT DIRECTION

Overwhelmed by the choice of fitness trends? Don’t be. The evidence says we can get healthier, fitter and lose weight just by walking, says Laura Day

PICTURE THIS: if you were offered a daily pill that could reduce your risk of type 2 diabetes, certain cancers, heart disease and stroke, give you a healthy dose of vitamin D, help you lose weight, tone up AND increase your stamina, would you take it? We thought so! But before you go googling where to buy this new wonder drug, here’s the best bit: the benefits are all yours with a brisk daily walk.

Hard to believe? Well, listen to this: time and again the evidence supports claims that walking reduces the risk of chronic diseases. In 2008 University College London researchers published a review of the most robust walking studies carried out between 1970 and 2007. They concluded walking cut the risk of cardiovascular disease by 31%, and the risk of dying over the 12-year study period was reduced by 32% for both men and women. Those who walked harder for longer had the greatest protection.

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