Walking may seem like a simple task that you perform on a daily basis, but you may be discounting the benefits that it is offering your health.

While it is one of the simplest forms of exercise, walking has so many great benefits.  Because walking is low impact and requires minimal equipment, it can be done at any time of day and can be performed at your own pace.

Check out some of the great health benefits that walking can give you each and every day.

  • Walking regulates post-meal blood sugar levels as well as improves insulin sensitivity. Walking (like other forms of exercise) basically opens the gateway to the muscle cells which allows sugar from the bloodstream to get soaked up without the need for a large insulin spike. Smaller spikes in insulin and blood sugar levels is a recipe for long-term good health.
  • Walking lowers the stress hormone cortisol which not only makes you feel more relaxed, it also mitigates the negative effects of cortisol on insulin sensitivity. Yes, being stressed can make you more insulin resistant – but don’t stress, just walk it off.
  • Walking lowers blood pressure. It has an effect on your endothelium (the cells of your arteries) which promotes the release of nitric oxide, ultimately making your arteries less stiff and more relaxed. So I guess you could say walking makes you and your vessels more relaxed.
  • Walking can indirectly help you to stimulate vitamin D, simply by spending more time outside in the sun.
  • Walking helps you to burn some extra body fat. The level of intensity of a stroll or brisk walk is not high enough to deplete a large amount of glycogen (the stored form of carbohydrate in muscle) but it certainly sends a message to your body to ramp up fat metabolism.
  • Research has shown that walking releases endorphins flooding you with feel-good vibes. But science aside – you can’t argue with feeling good.

To celebrate the benefits of walking, Phoenix Health Fund is taking part in the National Walk to Work day on the 6th October.  National walk to work day is run by Diabetes Australia to highlight the great health benefits that can be achieved by simply getting active through simple exercise to and from work.