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article imageExercising has more benefits than just weight loss

By Megan Woo     Feb 2, 2015 in Health
Doctors and health experts always recommend that everyone should exercise a set amount of minutes a day, but it's more than just for weight loss reasons.
A report conducted by the U.K. based Ramblers and Macmillian Cancer Support found that regularly walking for 150 minutes a day saves at least 37,000 lives a year and reduces the number of type 2 diabetes cases by 300,000.
They even found that brisk walking could be more effective than running because it reduces the risk of heart disease. Scientists at the Lawrence Berkley National Laboratory studied participants between the ages of 18 and 80 over a six year period, and they found that the risk of heart disease decreased 9.3 percent.
Another benefit to walking more is that it helps you sleep easier. Researchers at the John Hopkins University found 77 overweight volunteers that have either type 2 diabetes or pre-diabetes. They found that many of them suffer from problems such as sleep apnea, daytime fatigue, insomnia or interrupted sleep. Half of the volunteers were on a weight loss exercise training plan, while the other half just did the diet. As a whole, the group lost an average of 15 pounds and 15 percent of belly fat after 6 months. Researchers saw that sleep quality improved as a result.
Researchers at Oregon State University conducted a similar study. They found people who exercise at least 150 minutes a week slept better and felt more alert during the day than those who didn't exercise.
Also, walking is also known to relieve the symptoms of depression. According to a University of Wisconsin study, regular exercise at least three times a week elevates mood and behavior and has proved to be more effective than psychotherapy. They found people who were moderately depressed and split them up into two groups. One group was assigned to the exercise program, while the other group was assigned to psychotherapy. After a year, they found that the people who were assigned to the exercise program were no longer depressed. However, some of the patients in the psychotherapy group came back for more treatment.
As you can see, there are many benefits to walking than just for weight loss reasons.
More about Walking, Exercise, Healthy, Women's health
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