Health and fitness:6 benefits of walking that may not be known Walking is the easiest and easiest way to exercise, especially during the new crown epidemic when most activities are restricted, only going out and walking is relatively free.

According to experts, since the outbreak of the new crown epidemic, the number of people who insist on walking and exercising every day in many places has increased a lot; experts also encourage people not to underestimate walking, because when you go out to exercise your legs, it can actually bring Many unexpected benefits.

Improve the immune system

The COVID-19 pandemic has drawn more attention to the role the immune system plays. If you want to strengthen your immune system, you might as well start with brisk walking.

The human immune system is the first line of defense against viruses. The immune system includes natural killer cells (NPCs), also known as large granular lymphocytes.

Dr. Bird said that many natural killer cells are found in our nose, gut, and respiratory tract. Therefore, these NPCs are encountered when the virus passes through any of these places.

Dr. Bird explained that these natural killer cells do not recognize these viruses because they have never seen them before. But knowing that the virus is harmful, so eliminated it. After that, the B cells of the final immune system also start to join and produce antibodies.

The more natural killer cells there are, the faster the immune system responds. Just one brisk walk can greatly increase your NKCs, says Dr. Bird.

It helps to reduce inflammation

Dr. Bird explained that many of our physical and mental disorders are actually at work with chronic inflammation. Inflammation is the body’s natural response to injury. Inflammation is the body’s attack on the “enemy” to protect us.

However, this inflammatory healing ability can actually do a lot of damage to the body if there is no virus to attack.

Dr. Bird explained that eating junk food, not exercising, and stress all contribute to chronic inflammation of the immune system. This is a major factor in many of our diseases.

But walking can help ease inflammation. One of them is the release of myokines (also known as myokines) from the muscles when walking. Walking triggers the release of this muscle hormone, which then travels throughout the body to fight inflammation.

At the same time, walking can also reduce visceral fat (visceral fat), thereby reducing inflammation.

let the “body battery” work normally

You may recall the statement from biology class that “mitochondria are the powerhouses of the cell.” But do you know why it’s so important?

They’re literally our body’s batteries, powering us, Bird said. We are 100 percent dependent on mitochondria, otherwise, we would stop working in an instant. And walking keeps our batteries working.

Mitochondria need to be in constant motion — they’re designed to move, Bird said. If you let them stand still, they stop working as they should.

Bird also compared it to cell phone charging. He said that when you charge your phone for too long, it heats up. Heat is the leakage of electrons from the battery, which affects the life of the phone.

As with batteries, if you’re eating too many calories and you’re sedentary and can’t burn calories, you’re overcharging your mitochondria.

When mitochondria are overcharged, they release unstable atoms called free radicals. It is these free radicals that can do immeasurable damage to the body, including causing inflammation.

Walking can interrupt this sedentary phenomenon and prevent these free radicals from leaking and escaping, like turning off the plug when your phone is fully charged.

Improve mental health

Do you know how walking helps our brains?

Dr. Bird explains that when you walk, a substance called brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is released. The only way to get it into the body is through exercise – it’s absolutely up to us to move around.

Bird said the brain-derived neurotrophic factor helps reduce inflammation. Inflammation can cause not only physical problems but also mental health problems. Therefore, reducing inflammation by walking can help you deal with anxiety and depression.

Increase creativity

What Aristotle, Nietzsche, and Kierkegaard have in common is not only that they were all great philosophers, but that their best sparks of thought are generated while walking.

Dr. Bird advises people to be creative and imaginative in their walks, like the great philosophers. It’s more likely to find inspiration than if you’re sitting there doing nothing, he says.

Philosophers make no secret of the help of walking to their minds. Nietzsche once wrote: “All truly great ideas are conceived in walking”.

And Aristotle created the Persian school (also translated as the wandering school, peripatetic,) as its name suggests, to travel and walk everywhere.

Helps strengthen and repair joints

There is a view that joints have a certain lifespan, so use them sparingly.

As a result, some people are skeptical about overusing their joints, and they sometimes even avoid walking to reduce joint wear.

But Dr. Bird said the opposite was true. “The more you walk, the more you repair your cartilage tissue,” he said. “The thicker the cartilage becomes, the stronger your joints become.”


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