Walking for exercise offers many benefits
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Regular walking reduces the risk of such common health problems as heart disease, obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure and depression.
Walking briskly for an hour a day can cut in half the effect of 32 different genes that contribute to obesity.
Just a 15-minute daily walk can reduce the amount of chocolate you eat when stressed. It can also suppress cravings for chocolate and other sweets.
Walking five to six miles a week can prevent the development of arthritis. It can also reduce arthritis-related pain by lubricating knee and hip joints and strengthening the muscles that support those joints.
Walking boosts immune function. A study found that men and women who walked at least 20 minutes a day, five days a week had 43 percent fewer sick days than those who exercised once a week or less. Walkers who did get sick had milder symptoms and recovered more quickly.
As a bonus, walking requires no special equipment, no training, no memberships and no fees. All you need is a pair of comfortable walking shoes and a little time to walk your way to better health.