The Many Benefits Of Walking

Dr. Hira Tanveer

3 min read

Healthy living has a few basic principles. An important one is to eat right. If the body is not given the right fuel, do not expect it to work well. Similarly, portion size is also important. There is only so much food that your body needs, and overfilling it is always bad for the body. Likewise, mealtimes are also very vital for healthy living.

Another rather crucial aspect of healthy living is exercise. People often misconstrue the meaning of being physically active. Many are under the misconception that only when one sweats and pumps iron, they get the requisite workout done. This perception has scared so many people away from working out, as they just do not have it in them to work this hard.

However, while its good to gym, it is not exactly a condition for healthy living. Moderate physical activity is just as well and good for the body. Rather than sparingly sweating in the gym, consistently doing the moderate exercise is better.

One such ideal low-intensity physical activity is walking.

Benefits of Walking

Walking has all-encompassing benefits that holistically tackle the issues ailing the entire body. It does not require any special equipment, unlike many gyming or resistant training exercises. Similarly, walking can be done anywhere and anytime.

Also, one does not have to have a trainer onboard for walking. It also is not dangerous like some forms of exercise, so can be carried out by anyone and everyone. These conveniences improve the access and benefits of regular walking, even further.

Convenience aside, there are many other  health benefits of walking, which are as follows:

It burns calories

Having a normal BMI essential for living. If the body has to carry around excess weight, it suffers greatly. From the musculoskeletal system to the cardiovascular system to mental health, all deteriorate in the process. Therefore, brisk walking is a good way to burn calories and shed off excess weight.

Moreover, mobility is a big challenge for the obese and morbidly obese people.

They thus, cannot be expected to do the difficult steps of the strenuous physical exercises and high-intensity workouts, and so walking is a great option for them. It is easy to do and does not require any training; you just have to build the stamina for it.

It helps prevents heart diseases

One of the best ways to boost health is by regularly walking. According to research conducted by experts, walking 5 times a week for around 30 minutes reduces the risk of coronary heart disease by 19%. Suffice to say, with walking, a little bit of effort reaps great rewards for the health of the heart.

Furthermore, research has also shown that the increment in the amount of walking activity also further reduces the chances of the disease; the more the merrier. However, it is best to stick to your comfort level first before aiming too high.

It helps improve mental health

A lovely stroll is good for mental health as well. It clears away the clutter from the mind and helps it become calm. Moreover, exercise also helps reduce stress levels and releases the ‘happiness’ hormones that improve mood and disposition.

Similarly, walking also, therefore, helps to prevent mental diseases like anxiety and depression that result from chronic stress. Chronic stress not only jeopardizes the physical health, but it also causes the physical body to suffer as well. It causes obesity, heart diseases, insomnia, etc. All these potential ailments can be remedied by walking. Suffice to say that the benefits of walking cannot be stressed enough!

It improves musculoskeletal health

As we age, our bones start to weaken and lose out on their mass. This causes joints problems, restricts mobility, and also greatly increases the chances of painful conditions like fractures. Osteoporosis and other similar ailments also plague a lot of people, especially menopausal women.

For in such cases, walking is extremely vital. However, for this exercise to be fruitful, it is important to add spurts of heightened activity like a brisk walk, climbing, etc. to the moderate-paced walk, you would do otherwise.

Moreover, not just the bones, but muscles are also strengthened due to walking. It employs the lower limbs and abdominal muscles. Adding actions of the arms like pumping and lifting them also helps to keep the upper body muscles going. Hence, as walking engages all of the muscles, it keeps the body healthy as well.

It improves circulation

Walking helps blood flow to the peripheries and improves circulation. Due to the exercise of walking, the heart is made to work harder, as a result, it pumps blood to the entire body. Thus, all the cells that were previously deprived of the oxygen are replenished. This enables them to carry out their task better.

It promotes longevity

Walking protects people from lethal and life-threatening conditions like heart attack, coronary heart disease, diabetes, etc. Furthermore, walking itself also helps lower the risk of dying, and not just due to disease. If you want a long and healthy life, walk towards it!

Better sleep quality

As walking promotes mental wellbeing, it therefore also effectively targets and remedies stress. Anxiety and worry are counter-intuitive for sleep; people who suffer from stress have a hard time falling asleep and staying asleep.  As a result, they are unable to get quality shuteye. Lack of quality sleep is extremely bad for health. It causes mental and physical damage, both, and leads to lifelong conditions like obesity.

However, as walking helps to lower stress levels, it indirectly wards off insomnia as well.

Therefore, the benefits of walking are aplenty. These are wide-ranging and help promote quality life.

Though walking may be difficult for you if you have some orthopedic problems and you should contact a specialist or surgeon immediately. You can find and book an appointment with the best general surgeon in Peshawar, Lahore, Karachi or Islamabad. You can book an appointment via the website, mobile app or by calling our helpline at 042-3890-0939 for assistance to find the RIGHT professional for your concerns.

Disclaimer: The contents of this article are intended to raise awareness about common health issues and should not be viewed as sound medical advice for your specific condition. You should always consult with a licensed medical practitioner prior to following any suggestions outlined in this article or adopting any treatment protocol based on the contents of this article.

Dr. Hira Tanveer - Author Dr. Hira Tanveer is an MBBS doctor and currently serving at CMH Lahore. Writing is her favorite hobby as she loves to share professional advice on trendy healthcare issues, general well-being, healthy diet, and lifestyle.