Better Cardio Fitness Predicts A Longer Life, Study Finds

New research claimed that brisk walkers live longer. The researchers even said that the theory holds true regardless of the weight class of fast walkers.

In their study published in the Mayo Clinic Proceedings, the researchers claimed that brisk walkers who had a speed of three miles per hour or about 100 steps per minute overtake most walkers who only had a speed of two miles per hour with just 50 steps a minute. Among the 474,919 participants in the study, those who walked a faster pace had longer life expectancy across all weight categories.

Those who walked briskly had a total life expectancy of 86.7 to 87.8 years compared to those who walked a slower pace who are only expected to reach 64.8 to 72.4 years of age.

Tom Yates, the lead author from the University of Leicester in England, attested that physical fitness may be a better indicator in measuring mortality rates compared to body mass index. Since the results pointed out that weight was not a determining factor among the walkers but their pacing, the researchers also found that those who were underweight had a slower walking pace and were at higher risk of heart-related diseases.

According to another co-author and clinical epidemiologist at the Leicester Diabetes Center Dr. Francesco Zaccardi, prior studies suggested a 20 percent relative increase of death risk for every 5 kilograms per meter squared increase. Those who had a reference value of 25 kilograms per meter squared for their BMI were labeled as overweight.

Their research, however, debunked the findings that BMI is an indicator of mortality. He further averred that it is not easy to interpret a relative risk when it comes to mortality. It was easier for them to separate body mass index and physical fitness to arrive at a conclusion that mortality may not necessarily be linked to body mass index but more on physical fitness.

As per Better Health, walking at least 30 minutes a day improves overall health as. It is said to advance cardiovascular fitness, promote bone strength, reduce excess body fat and improve the body’s overall power and endurance. Other than heart diseases, the exercise also prevents chronic diseases such as osteoporosis, type 2 diabetes and cancer.

Hiking Study says fast walkers live longer. Freee-Photos/Pixabay

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