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Why should you take more walks as you get older

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As we get older, it’s natural for us to slow down a bit, but if you are able to keep walking, you really should try to do so for at least a little while each day. Why? Here are some of the very real benefits of walking for older people:

Improved heart health

One of the best things about walking when you’re a bit older is the fact that it is great at improving circulation and lowering blood pressure. This can help to prevent cardiovascular disease and lower your chances of experiencing a heart attack and stroke. Ideally, you should be walking a few miles a day, which might sound like a lot, but many a nursing home these days has sprawling grounds where you can relax and take in the air, so you can spread your walking out over time. If you feel a bit unsafe walking alone, try to buddy up with a friend or family member or look into joining a walking group for older people – it’s a great way to make friends too.

Stronger immune system

When you’re older things like colds and flu that may have been a mild inconvenience when you were younger can really knock you off your feet. The good news is that walking for as little as 20 minutes each day for at least five days of the week is enough to boost your immune system. In fact, you will be 43 percent less likely to be sick than your peers who are more sedentary when it comes to viruses.

Maintain a healthy weight

Many older people find themselves piling on the pounds because they aren’t as active as they once were. Obviously, if you take the time to walk as often as possible, this is less likely to be an issue for you. So many people think that walking is too gentle to really help with weight loss/maintenance, but it really can help to keep you trim and healthy no matter how leisurely your walks may be.

Great for mental health

If you walk outdoors, preferably in an attractive spot like a large garden, park or woodland, you are likely to feel much more upbeat than you would by sitting at home. Numerous studies have found that walking in nature can relieve stress and boost mood, but it can also lower blood pressure and reduce your risk of heart disease too, nature is such a healer, so if you can walk in a beauty spot, please do.

Strengthen bones

As you get older, your bones tend to become weaker and you can be prone to ailments like osteoporosis. The good news is, if you walk regularly, your bones and your muscles will be strengthened and you will be fast less likely to lose bone density or muscle mass at the rate your sedentary peers will.

As you can see, walking when you’re older is great for your health in so many ways, so if you are able to get up and move around for a while, you should make it your goal to do so.

 

Image Pexels – CCO Licence

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