You are on page 1of 6


Running and walking are both excellent aerobic exercises, as both help promote weight
loss, improve your sleep, elevate your mood, boost your energy level, decrease blood
pressure and cholesterol levels and decrease the risk of cancer, diabetes, and heart

Many feel walking is more of a mode of transport than exercise, but it really is one
of the best things you can do for your body, your looks and long-term health.
Walking is more than just getting from here to there, those steps are improving
cardiovascular strength, strengthening & toning your muscles for more fatburning power and lowing the chance of disease.

Walking vs. Running

Brisk walking actually reduces the risk of heart disease more effectively than
running when the energy expenditure of both activities is balanced out. A study
where researchers compared data from two studies over a period of six years of
33,060 runners and 15,045 walkers aged 18 to 80, found that when the same
amount of energy was expended, walkers experienced greater health benefits
than runners.
Running does reduce the risk of heart disease by 4.5% while walking reduced it by
9.3%, however calorie for calorie, walking also had a stronger impact on heart
disease risk factors:

Risk of first-time high blood pressure was reduced by 4.2% by running and
7.2% by walking.

First-time high cholesterol risk was lowered by 4.3% by running and 7% by


The risk of first-time diabetes was reduced by about 12% by both walking
and running.
Study leader Dr Paul Williams, from the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
in California stated that moderate-intensity walking and running both provide
ideal health benefits because they involve the same muscle groups, they are just
performed at different intensities. The runners and walkers had to expend the
same energy to get the same benefits. That means youd have to walk longer than
youd have to run for the same effect.
Walking and running are low-cost, easy-to-do anywhere, year-round, and even
social activities. But since running is more rigorous than walking, so if you're going
to run, you should select a running program to maximize your conditioning in
minimum time.

Dangers Of Pushing Too Hard

A report published by researchers from Denmark in the Journal of the American
College of Cardiology, showed that people who push their bodies too hard may
essentially undo the benefit of exercise. Those who ran at a fast pace more than
four hours a week, for more than three times per week, had about the same risk of
dying during the studys 12-year follow up, as those who were sedentary and
hardly exercised at all. The link held up even after the researchers accounted for
potentially confounding factors such as age, sex, whether the participants had a
history of heart disease or diabetes, or if they smoked and drank alcohol.
In fact, those with the lowest risk of dying during the study, were people who ran
less than three times a week for one to 2.4 hours, at a slow to moderate pace.
Even people who ran slightly more, for 2.5 hours to four hours a week at an
average pace, less than 3X a week, showed slightly higher mortality risk at 66%,
which was something that came as a surprise.
One looking to lose weight and stay healthy, should find a happy medium thats
just right to maintain heart health, burn off excess calories and keep blood sugar

levels under control. According to these results, that sweet spot is closer to the
less side of the curve than the more side. So the good news is that those who do
not wish to run, can obtain the same health and fitness benefits by walking more.

Why Walking is Great For Almost

Walking is a great exercise for those who are just starting to workout or for those
with health problems. Also, for the significantly overweight, walking can be less
stressful on the body. An important factor to consider when looking at the
difference between running and walking, is that because of the repetitive nature
of running, the risk of injury is greater. Running is considered high impact exercise.
This can cause injury to the hip, knee and ankle joints. Walking is a low impact
activity and is less damaging to the body.
While walking is easier on your hip and knee joints, you should still do lunges or
squats twice a week. The RealAge benefit of 10,000 steps a day is feeling 4.6 years
younger for women and 4.1 for men. You can even find ways to fit walking in while
you work, such as a walking meeting or a treadmill desk.

Still Wanting To Run Rather Than Walk?

If you do choose to run, a way to reduce your risk of injury is by running on the
best surfaces such as grass, woodland trails, earth, cinders and man-made tracks.
Also, wear good quality shoes and be sure to run with correct form and gradually
increase the mileage that you run.

World-first evidence suggests that meditation

alters cancer survivors cells

For the first time, scientists have found clear biological evidence
that meditation and support groups can affect us on a cellular

8 NOV 2014


Were often told that being happy, meditating and mindfulness can
benefit our health. We all have that one friend of a friend who says they
cured their terminal illness by quitting their job and taking up surfing but until now theres been very little scientific evidence to back up
these claims.
Now researchers in Canada have found the first evidence to suggest
that support groups that encourage meditation and yoga can actually
alter the cellular activity of cancer survivors.
Their study, which was published in the journal Cancer last week, is
one of the first to suggest that a mind-body connection really does
The team found that the telomeres - the protein caps at the end of our
chromosomes that determine how quickly a cell ages - stayed the
same length in cancer survivors who meditated or took part in support
groups over a three-month period.
On the other hand, the telomeres of cancer survivors who didnt
participate in these groups shortened during the three-month study.
Scientists still dont know for sure whether telomeres are involved in
regulating disease, but there is early evidence that suggests shortened
telomeres are associated with the likelihood of surviving several
diseases, including breast cancer, as well as cellular ageing.
And longer telomeres are generally thought to help protect us from
"We already know that psychosocial interventions like mindfulness
meditation will help you feel better mentally, but now for the first time
we have evidence that they can also influence key aspects of your
biology," said Linda E. Carlson, a psychosocial research and the lead

investigator at the Tom Baker Cancer Centre, in a press release. She

conducted the study alongside scientists from the University of
"It was surprising that we could see any difference in telomere length at
all over the three-month period studied," said Carlson. "Further
research is needed to better quantify these potential health benefits,
but this is an exciting discovery that provides encouraging news."
As part of the research, 88 breast cancer survivors who had completed
their treatment more than three months ago were monitored. The
average age of the participants was 55, and to be eligible to participate
in the study they all had to have experienced significant levels of
emotional distress.
They were separated into three groups - one was asked to attend eight
weekly, 90-minute group sessions that provided instructions on
mindfulness meditation and gentle yoga. These participants were
asked to practice meditation and yoga at home for 45 minutes daily.
The second group met up for 90 minutes each week for the three
months, and were encouraged to talk openly about their concerns and
The third control group simply attended one six-hour stress
management seminar.
Before and after the study, all participants had their blood analysed and
their telomere length measured.
Both groups who attended the support groups had maintained their
telomere length over the three-month period, while the telomeres of the
third group had shortened. The two groups who'd attended the regular
meetings also reported lower stress levels and better moods.
Although this is pretty exciting research, its still not known whether
these benefits will be long-term or what's causing this biological

effect. Further research is now needed to find out whether these results
are replicable across a larger number of participants, and what they
mean for our health long-term.
But its a pretty huge first step towards understanding more about how
our mental state affects our health. And it's part of a growing body of
research out there - a separate group of Italian scientists published
in PLOS ONE a few weeks ago also showed that mindfulness training
can change the structure of our brains.
Of course for many believers in meditation, this discovery probably isn't
that exciting. Research back in the '80s had suggested that cancer
patients who join support groups are more likely to survive. But as we
like to say, peer review or it didn't happen.
Were (sceptically) excited.
Source: EurekAlert