New research released on Monday in Nature Medicine gives us hope! Participants in the study wore activity trackers and had an average of 4 years of continuous monitoring. What they found was that more steps are better. People who can walk four miles a day, about 8,200 steps, are less likely to suffer from depressive disorder, obesity, sleep apnea, or acid reflux.

We already know that the average person gains 1-2 pounds a year from young adulthood through middle age, slowly leading to unhealthy weight or even obesity. If you are currently at an unhealthy weight (those with BMI from 25-29), cut your risk of becoming obese in half by getting 11,000 steps a day. The study found the increase from 6,000 steps a day to 11,000 steps reduced the incidence of obesity by 50%!

Similar studies find that steps taken as we go about daily life walking the dog, doing housework, etc., lower the risk of cancer and heart disease. Dementia risks have also been studied, and the risk can be cut in half by walking at least 10,000 steps a day.

Our steps add up in a day; these incidental daily task type of stepping does matter, so let’s move together today! Can we reach 11,000 steps today? I think it’s possible! I know I will have to walk more every hour today to make it happen because I have a class for half of the workday and a sporting event tonight, so I will have to hit the gym in addition to my activity to hit the 11,000-step goal.

When can you get some extra steps in today? It’s going to be warm around lunch, so could you take a longer break and walk for 45 minutes? Tell us your plan in the comments below! Ready, Set, Go!

Shelley Argabrite
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