National Walk To Work Day: 5 Great Health Benefits Of Walking

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National Walk To Work Day: 5 Great Health Benefits Of Walking
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alt Today is the eighth annual National Walk to Work Day. If you’re reading this, you may already be at your desk. And, like 91 percent of the population, you probably arrived there by car (86 percent) or public transportation (5 percent). But it's not too late! There's still time to pound the pavement on your way back home -- or, if that isn't possible, take a walk during your lunch break. (If you happen to be in New York, the new "pedestrian corridor" in midtown might be a good place to start.)

Why should you bother? The latest research shows that walking, specifically, is associated with everything from diabetes prevention to lowering cholesterol to improving mood.

It May Help Prevent Obesity

If you're prone to being obese, spending just one hour going for a brisk walk may reduce your genetic influence by half. That's the finding from a Harvard School of Public Health Study that was recently presented at the American Heart Association's Epidemiology and Prevention/Nutrition, Physical Activity and Metabolism 2012 Scientific Sessions.

"In our study, a brisk one-hour daily walk reduced the genetic influence towards obesity, measured by differences in BMI by half," study researcher Qibin Qi, Ph.D. said in a statement. "On the other hand, a sedentary lifestyle marked by watching television four hours a day increased the genetic influence by 50 percent."

Not only is it helpful to get moving from behind your desk -- it might be harmful to stay slumped over your computer instead.

Walk The Talk

Our trusted experts explore ways and offer tips to incorporate walking into your daily life.
Groups across America, of all ages and abilities, are finding a new sense of community by walking.
Just 30 minutes of walking, five times a week, is enough to improve your overall health.
Walking is also good for mind and soul, sparking your creativity and inspiration.