Walking Daily Could Significantly Lower Your Chance of a Stroke
The suggestion that exercise may help cut the risk of stroke isn’t exactly new, but a new study from London suggests that simply taking a daily walk can reduce the risk of stroke in older men.
The study suggests that walking for as little as an hour may lower the risk of stroke by as much as one-third, and walking for three hours or more a day could potentially cut the risk by two-thirds.
“Stroke is a major cause of death and disability and it is important to find ways to prevent stroke, especially in older people who are at high risk,” said lead researcher Barbara Jefferis, a senior research associate in the department of primary care and population health at University College London.
An active lifestyle is important for all aspects of your health, but the study suggests walking of any sort is specifically helpful in lowering the risk of stroke.
“Getting into the habit of walking every day for at least an hour could protect against stroke,” Jefferis said. “Walking could be for transport, such as doing errands and going to the shops, walking around indoors as well as walking for leisure, such as walking in a park.”
The study was published in the November 14 online edition of the journal Stroke. The team collected data on almost 3,500 healthy men between the ages of 60 and 80 who were taking part in a larger heart study. The men were surveyed on how far they walk each week, then split into groups based on their responses. During the next 10 years, men who walked eight to 14 hours a week saw a one-third lower chance of stroke compared to men who walked zero to three hours a week. The men who walked more than 22 hours a week had even lower chances of stroke.