Faster walkers are more likely to live longer
Going for a brisk walk could help you live longer, regardless of body weight or obesity, a new study suggests.
Those who take up a quicker walking pace lived longer than those who walked more slowly, according to researchers who monitored the walking habits and deaths of nearly 475,000 people, most of whom were in their 50s at the start of the study.
What is ‘Brisk walking’? – this was defined by the researchers as walking at least 3 miles per hour, or 100 steps a minute.
There could be a question mark over what constituted the ‘brisk walk’ because during research the participant’s walking pace was self-reported, and it was their personal opinion as to whether they walked at a “slow pace,” “steady/average pace,” or “brisk pace.”
Participants with brisk walking paces had longer life expectancies across all categories of BMI, according to the study published in Mayo Clinic Proceedings
Even those with a high BMI (from 20 to 40), the survival is the same if they are fast walkers. However, participants with slower walking paces had shorter life expectancies across all categories of BMI.
Researchers reported that women who walked more quickly had a life span of about 87 years compared to 72 years for women who walked slowly.
Men who walked quickly had a life span of about 86 years compared to 65 years for men who walked more slowly.
That’s a 15-year average difference for women and a 20-year average difference for men.
The results indicate that if you walk faster are doing a very low-intensity form of cardio, and if you do this on a regular basis, it will strengthen and condition your heart. No matter whether you are overweight or in shape, fast walking does have positive physical effects on your body and life expectancy.