Fit over 50 Update — Walking 8,000/day lowers death risk 50%

In my and Phil Bishop’s book, Fit over 50: Make Simple Choices Today for a Healthier, Happier You, we write:

A 2015 study found that people who replaced “some of their sitting time with a light-intensity activity like strolling gained a substantial benefit in terms of mortality risk.” In fact, if participants “replaced as little as two minutes of sitting each hour with gentle walking, they lowered their risk of premature death by about 33 percent, compared with people who sat almost nonstop.” A study in Circulation of adults age 45 to 64 suggested that individuals “can make up for years of sedentary behavior with two years of exercise.” In fact, participants who had worked out at least four days a week with a regimen of weight training, balance work, and yoga had healthier hearts and arteries and were fitter. The researchers added, “Literally any exercise is better than none.”

Fit over 50, page 155

But, what’s best. 5,000 steps a day? 10,000 steps a day?

The Washington Post reported new research conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevent, the National Cancer Institute, and the National Institute on Aging suggests taking 8,000 steps a day may increase one’s odds of living a longer life.

In the study published in JAMA, “the researchers found that, compared with people who walk 4,000 steps (roughly two miles) a day, those who walk 8,000 steps (four miles) a day are about half as likely to die in the next 10 years for any reason, including cardiovascular disease and cancer.”

Moreover, those who walk 12,000 steps a day, or six miles, see their chance “of dying in that time frame drop from 51 percent lower to 65 percent lower than two-mile-a-day-walkers.”

We repeat, “Literally any exercise is better than none.” So, find something you like to do, and do a little most days of the week. Then, over time, increase. As a result the quality and quantity of your life will increase.

We’ ve got tons of simple tips on becoming more highly healthy in our book, Fit over 50: Make Simple Choices Today for a Healthier, Happier You. Order Fit over 50 here.

© Copyright WLL, INC. 2020. This blog provides a wide variety of general health information only and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment from your regular physician. If you are concerned about your health, take what you learn from this blog and meet with your personal doctor to discuss your concerns.

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