Harvard Men's Health Watch

Counting steps kick-starts health

The more steps men take daily, the healthier they feel, according to a study in the American Journal of Health Promotion. And you benefit even if you don't attain the widely touted goal of 10,000 steps per day for walking fitness programs. The study focused on 385 men age 55 and older in Alberta, Canada. Most were overweight or obese. They wore pedometers for three days to count the number of steps they took, both on walks and just in their day-to-day lives. The men also filled out a survey that assessed their physical and mental health and quality of life. Men in the study averaged 8,539 steps a day. The more steps they logged, the higher they scored on health and life quality. Pedometers can help you motivate yourself to be more physically active, but wear good-quality walking shoes and increase daily steps gradually to avoid undue soreness or injuries.

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