Three reasons why walking is beneficial to health and wellbeing
3) Physical health
Regular walking helps to keep your circulatory system healthy and, according to NHS Choices, may significantly reduce your chances of developing cardiovascular problems including high blood pressure, high cholesterol and stroke. Regular walking also boosts the immune system and may reduce your risk of developing type 2 diabetes and various cancers.
Regular walks outside could also reduce your risk of developing a vitamin D deficiency. According to NHS Choices, many people may develop a shortage of this essential vitamin over the winter months, when sunlight levels are often inadequate for our bodies to produce it naturally via sunlight on the skin. According to current NHS advice, most people can make enough vitamin D by spending around 15 minutes outside each day between March and October in the sunlight with forearms, face and hands uncovered – or a walk in the park in a short-sleeved top or shirt. If you plan to be outside for longer than this, use a sunscreen with a minimum 15 SPF. People with darker skin may need to spend a little longer in the sun to produce enough vitamin D.
Vitamin D is an essential nutrient which helps to regulate calcium and phosphate in the body, required to maintain healthy bones and teeth. A deficiency can lead to a softening or weakening of the bones and even deformity if bones are still growing, for example in children. For more information on sunlight and vitamin D, visit NHS Choices.
If you would like to get out and about walking more often, try our Three quick tips to increase your walking activity.
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