Walk your way to wellness

It may be hard to believe but the simple act of walking may help us to stay looking and feeling younger for longer.

For many of us as we get older, we spend too much time sitting down, but by finding simple ways to move more, we can reduce the risk of many common conditions, in particular heart disease, diabetes, stroke, dementia, and some types of cancer. Furthermore, we now know that exercise is also a form of therapy and the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges - the UK’s top doctors' forum - called their recent report Exercise - the Miracle Cure!

Exercise in any form helps to slow the changes we have assumed are due to the ageing process. It doesn't just make you feel younger, it may actually turn off the ageing process in your chromosomes. Whatever our age, walking is one of the simplest and best forms of exercise that doesn’t cost a penny and requires no special equipment, just a comfortable pair of shoes. The key is to walk briskly, just enough so that you can sense your breathing is a little faster.

Health benefits of walking

Often overlooked as a form of exercise, walking, particularly brisk walking, brings significant health benefits. Just 30 minutes of brisk walking each day can help to:

  • Reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke and improve our heart and lung health
  • Manage blood pressure, cholesterol levels, joint and muscular pain or stiffness, and diabetes
  • Strengthen bones
  • Improve balance
  • Increase muscle strength, stamina and endurance
  • Reduce body fat
  • Reduce and/or reverse the effects of almost every long-term condition

Get walking every day

It couldn’t be easier to start walking more and improving your health. Look for opportunities to walk more, such as walking to the shop rather than going by car or getting off the bus a stop early. Remind yourself that with each step, you’re doing something positive to live a healthier life and improve the environment.

If it’s too difficult to walk for 30 minutes at one time, NHS guidance suggests instead that you have smaller ten-minute walks three times a day and gradually build up to walking for longer periods of time as your fitness improves.  

The miracle cure of walking

Brio Retirement Living is working with professor Sir Muir Gray, one of Britain’s leading public health doctors and author of Dr Gray’s Walking Cure to encourage people to live better for longer.

On the health benefits of walking, Sir Muir commented: “Walking is itself a miracle cure. The common recommendation is for 30 minutes extra a day whatever your lifestyle.

“But by walking just 10 continuous minutes at a brisk pace every day, you can reduce the risk of many common conditions, such as heart disease, stroke, dementia, type II diabetes, some cancers and depression and if you already have one or more than one of these conditions, you'll feel and function even better.

“What’s more, it helps us to feel good and live a healthier life, for longer.”

Live better with Brio

Living well for longer is at the heart of what we do within every Brio community. From our outdoor exercise trails, to our fitness and wellness suites* and the inviting green space right on your doorstep, you’ll have everything you need to get those steps up.

*Available in selected communities