Your trainer might have recommended you to walk 10000 steps a day to lose weight. The number of steps could help maintain current healthy weight or achieve a slimmer waist. Unfortunately, reaching this number does not actually promote weight loss.
10000 Steps as an Accomplishment
This number was said to be an accomplishment to many fitness enthusiasts. Walkers were encouraged to purchase and use fitness trackers and smartwatches to monitor their steps per day.
However, in a new study by the researchers at Brigham Young University, the study concluded that there is no specific number of steps that can prevent weight gain or promote weight loss.
In the study, researchers analyzed 120 freshman students. The researchers looked into the students’ steps per day during their first six months on campus. These students walked more than 10,000 steps a day for six days a week.
The researchers also analyzed the diets and body weights of the subjects. They wanted to know whether or not walking 10,000 steps or more per day really matters in weight loss.
Unfortunately, even though some of them managed to achieve more than 10,000 steps a day, they still gained weight.
It is common for college students to gain weight during their first few months away from their homes. Despite walking more than 10,000 steps per day, the subjects still gained 3.5 pounds within the observation period.
The lead author of the study concluded that exercise alone will not help you lose weight. Tracking steps may give you benefits as it helps you increase your physical activity. However, the study showed that it will not translate to weight loss.
Should You Stop Walking 10000 Steps a Day?
No. Just because the study showed that walking 10,000 steps a day will not prevent you from gaining weight or it does not promote weight loss, you will stop trying to walk or more to achieve that number.
Those who walked more than 10,000 steps a day saw a decline in their sedentary time. The researchers concluded that walking every day can have emotional and health benefits. It gets you out of living a sedentary lifestyle. Walking more steps is still better than having to sit there all day, watching Netflix.
1 in 4 Adults is Not Moving Enough
Doing nothing at all can be dangerous. It is as dangerous as becoming overweight.
As per the World Health Organization, 1 in 4 adults is not moving enough. Even if you exercise regularly, you might be spending most of your time watching TV when you are not exercising. This habit will still put your health at risk.
However, the benefits of daily running or regular exercise will not be canceled out when you sit for hours. Then again, you need to make an effort to move around every hour or every 30 minutes.
If you have a fitness tracker, you can set it up to remind you to move after 30 minutes of just doing nothing.
You must try to walk as many times as possible throughout the day. Consider going outside to breathe fresh air, which can help in boosting your creativity.
Each time you sit for 20 minutes, consider standing up for eight minutes. Even though the 10000 steps a day may not prevent obesity or gaining weight, it can still help stop sedentary.
What are the Effects of Sedentary Behavior
People who sit for more than six hours a day at work are likely to feel nervous, tired or hopeless, compared to people who just sit for less than three hours a day.
Watching TV all day also boosts your risk of anxiety.
Again, try to get up after 30 minutes.
Do some push-ups or resistance exercise.
Exercise can give you mind-boosting benefits.
Working up a sweat can trigger your body to release those endorphins that help you feel good.
There are tons of exercises out there that let you get a quick workout right at your desk.
When you sit for too long per day, your brain health will suffer, not just your weight. Sedentary life will likely increase your risk of developing dementia, even if you are not genetically predisposed to this medical condition.
A new study published in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease reported that people with a gene associated with dementia were twice as likely to develop dementia as those without the gene. However, researchers also found that people who are not exercising regularly are found to develop dementia the same way as those with the gene.
To avoid this, you need to keep yourself active.
Ensure that you walk three times a week. Or you can do resistance training. It is easy to do and it does not require expensive equipment.
Jumping rope is also great. It is fun to do and it burns a lot of calories.
Increase Risk of Diabetes
Your blood sugar will still increase if you are spending more time sitting down. Sedentary adults are likely to have high blood sugar levels that reach more than 5.7 percent in an A1C test. The number is already high to be categorized as prediabetes.
You may have a healthy weight. However, you are still likely to have a higher ratio of fat to muscle. This can result in metabolic issues, such as blood sugar, cholesterol, and hypertension.
If your blood sugar is high, you should try to lose up to 7 percent of your body weight. Exercise for 150 minutes per week.
If you are not into dieting, consider intermittent fasting. It is not a diet but is an eating plan that lets you schedule when you can eat and when you cannot consume food.
The great thing about intermittent fasting is that you are not depriving yourself of your favorite food. You can still eat anything you want as long as you are consuming the recommended calories to achieve your weight loss goal.
Even though the study showed that 10000 steps a day will not prevent gaining weight or promote weight loss, it still stops you from living a sedentary life. As mentioned earlier, the sedentary life has a lot of health risks.
If you struggle to lose weight, you must try being active all day. After sitting down for 30 minutes, get up and walk around for 8 minutes. It can help. Then, instead of dieting, try intermittent fasting to further boost your ability to lose weight.