Walking 10,000 steps a day is good. And the better is when you walk at a faster pace. A latest research shows that taking more steps is just not enough but it should be at a faster pace.
The researchers from the University of Sydney, AustraliaandUniversity of Southern Denmark found lowered risk of dementia, heart disease, cancer and death are associated with achieving 10,000 steps a day. However, a faster stepping pace like a power walk showed benefits beyond the number of steps achieved.
“The take-home message here is that for protective health benefits people could not only ideally aim for 10,000 steps a day but also aim to walk faster,” said co-lead author Dr Matthew Ahmadi, Research Fellow at the University of Sydney’s Charles Perkins Centre and Faculty of Medicine and Health.
‘For less active individuals, our study also demonstrates that as low as 3,800 steps a day can cut the risk of dementia by 25 percent,” said co-lead author Associate Professor Borja del Pozo Cruz from the University of Southern Denmark and senior researcher in health at the University of Cadiz.
The study drew on data from UK Biobank to link up step count data from 78,500 UK adults aged 40 to 79 years with health outcomes 7 years on. Participants wore a wrist accelerometer to measure physical activity over a period of 7 days. The information was linked with participants’ health records through several data sources and registries including inpatient hospital, primary care records, and cancer and death registries.
The researchers mentioned that the studies are observational.
WALKING; KEY POINTS:
- Every 2,000 steps lowered risk of premature death incrementally by 8 to 11 percent, up to approximately 10,000 steps a day.
- Similar associations seen for cardiovascular disease and cancer incidence.
- A higher number of steps per day was associated with a lower risk of all-cause dementia
- 9,800 steps was the optimal dose linked to lower risk of dementia by 50 percent, however risk was reduced by 25 percent at as low as 3,800 steps a day
- Stepping intensity or a faster pace showed beneficial associations for all outcomes (dementia, heart disease, cancer and death) over and above total daily steps.