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According to a cardiologist, increasing your daily step count by 500 could extend your life



Taking a literal first step toward better health is the first step toward a long and healthy life.

According to Dr. Suzanne Steinbaum, a preventative cardiologist, author, and Bayer Aspirin partner, walking is one of the easiest ways to improve your health and extend your lifespan by preventing diseases like heart disease.

“I always say, ‘Exercise is the best medication,'” she told Insider.

Being sedentary can raise your risk of heart disease, and your daily activity level is an important factor in your overall heart health.

With new exploration proposing that even short strolls have huge medical advantages, Steinbaum said adding a couple of additional moves toward your day can pay off, and you can begin little with a couple of blocks all at once.

“Doing something is better than doing nothing,” she said. “If walking is the beginning stages of embracing a heart healthy life, then it is the initial stages that will create habits that will be sustainable and last for a lifetime.”

Even if you can’t get to the gym, walking can help you get healthy and fit. Most health guidelines, like those from the CDC and American Heart Association, recommend 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week. Going to the gym is great for your health, but even a short walk counts toward your weekly exercise total.

“Strolling can totally combine with those rules, on the off chance that the strolling is finished as a purposeful and deliberate activity with an emphasis on the fitting pulse zone,” Steinbaum said.

Walking is a great form of exercise because it doesn’t require any special warming up or preparation, and even if you’re new to fitness, you can do it almost anywhere.

She suggests starting with just a few minutes and gradually building up to longer sessions if you want to develop a walking routine as a habit.

“The slower you start, the less frustrated you will feel and the faster you will progress. The key is routine and regularity. Just do a little bit every single day,” Steinbaum said.

She suggested that a good goal would be to walk even a short distance every day for six weeks, starting with a few blocks. This would help you develop a routine and keep you motivated to keep going.

Other experts have previously told Insider that beginning an exercise routine slowly and progressing over time can help prevent burnout and injury.

You don’t have to walk 10,000 steps every day; even an extra 5 minutes can help. It’s a marketing-based myth that walking 10,000 steps every day is best for your health. You can get critical medical advantages by doing less, research recommends.

Another review saw as 2,300 to 4,000 stages a day is connected to bring down paces of coronary illness and early passing, and adding 500 to 1000 stages each day can additionally decrease the gamble.

Not always more is better. Proof proposes that more youthful individuals can profit from up to 20,000 stages each day, however between 6,000 to 10,000 stages each day is great for individuals more established than 60, she said.

“To be the most effective form of exercise, it should be focused and intentional, with a goal of “getting the heart rate into the moderate intensity zone, she said. Your walking speed is also important.

Evidence suggests that finding a brisk pace that requires some effort but is not so intense that you are out of breath and cannot carry a conversation is a good indicator of intensity.

Make exercising a fun part of your routine to keep yourself motivated. To get the most out of any exercise, you have to do it consistently over time.

Steinbaum says that finding ways to make exercise fun can be very helpful. She walks as much as she can during the day and makes time for dance classes she likes.

“I love to move! It makes me feel invigorated and energized,” she said. “When you find something you love to do, then it is not a chore. It becomes something fun that you look forward to.”

Going for a walk with friends can help you stick to a routine because research shows that one of the best ways to stay motivated is to make exercise a social activity.

Steinbaum asserted that participating in TikTok walking challenges, such as the current trend of walking fifty miles per month, can also benefit your health.

“This TikTok trend was a wonderful way to get people moving, and to encourage people to walk 3,500 steps a day, for 50 miles a month, captured exactly what we need to do for overall heart health,” she said.


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