Winning the Mortality Race Depends on your Walking Pace
Keeping pace with individuals, matching each other’s footsteps and establishing a sync between two walking friends is pivotal for a great walking session. Comical it might seem for the outsider to see one of the spouses trailing behind the other while going out (this is not because of respect but due to lack of pace) or for a bunch of friends who always seem to miss out on their closest friend on any of the outings owing to his/her slow pace and the affected person feels neglected or at least lacks the attention of others. Slow and steady wins the race might be an age-old proverb that seems fine and you are inclined towards it but in this world, things happen in a fraction of a second and life becomes upside down even before you realize what’s happening around. Pizza deliveries, food deliveries and even grocery deliveries fight it out for the top place in least delivery time. Such is the importance of a fast-paced life these days.
The study comes at a time when individuals wish for incredible internet speed and monumental transport speed but don’t feel like moving their body or shaking their hips. According to the new study if you want to live longer start walking at a faster pace to reduce the risk of mortality and cardiovascular disease. There can be none unaware of the benefits of walking and walking for as little as less than 120 minutes too decreases mortality risk.
Studies on walking have always dealt with its benefits on our health and the quantity of time spent on this activity but never has anyone come up with an accurate walking speed that would further increase your long-term consequences. The research was a large-scale one which included researchers from two different continents. One team explored the various links between walking and likely chances of death due to cardiovascular diseases, cancer or other causes. You might be walking daily but the definition of walking differs from person to person. Some people visit the park in the name of walking to chat with their friends and take a stroll as slow as possible. Some others walk so briskly that it seems as though they are walking for their life and there are a few individuals who are unmindful of the surrounding and their only focus is to walk at a normal speed. The pace of your walk determines your mortality risk which is independent of the total physical activity performed by the individual.
The study analyzed data of more than 50,000 walkers who categorized themselves into one of the three groups ‘slow,’ ‘average,’ or ‘brisk’ depending on the pace of their walk. While a fast pace is anywhere between walking for 5-7 kilometers per hour some people also consider indications such as breathlessness as a sign of the pace. The researchers adjusted the pace to suit factors such as age, sex and BMI to predict mortality rate. Irrespective of other factors pace of the walk seemed to predict mortality risk. Brisk walkers were at a 21% decreased risk of mortality and the average walkers faced a 24% decline in mortality risk.
The study showed that the elderly population aged 60 or above reaped greater benefits-individuals walking at an average pace faced a 46% decline in cardiovascular disease-relate death risk and brisk pace individuals faced a 53% lower risk.
Now walking has a few strings attached to it. First one must initiate his/her interest in walking. Next, it’s all not only about walking but also of high concern is the walking pace. The importance that we give to the pace in which we walk comes of aid when walking more is not possible due to lack of time or in the absence of a walking-friendly zone. Increase your walking pace to decrease your cardiovascular health risk and premature mortality risk.
The results have no if’s and but’s. They are to the point and establish the fact that walking at a faster pace increases life span. Along with your walking regimen implement a well-balanced diet fulfilling all nutrient needs to lead a healthy lifestyle. Get in touch with registered dietitian nutritionists at www.firsteatright.com to help you plan a healthy diet.
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Dietitian & Nutritionist Dr. Nafeesa Imteyaz.