How 10,000 Steps a Day Can Reduce Diabetes Risk

Walking for exercise does your body a world of wonders: It improves your mood, flattens your belly, reduces body fat, and improves cholesterol. But it does something else, too: Walking reduces your risk for diabetes.

That's right. Take 10,000 steps a day (5 days a week) and you'll lower your diabetes risk three times more than if you walk only 3,000 steps a day. Pedometers serve as a great device for counting your steps. Learn how walking lowers your risk for diabetes, cancer, high blood pressure, and more.

You're probably already walking about 5,000 steps. Even sedentary folks rack up about 3,000 (1.5 miles). Here are easy ways to walk more steps:

  1. Track how far you walk. You'll be amazed at how pedometers motivate people to walk even more. Pick a model with an easy-to-read display, a sturdy clip, and a loop-on "leash." (It's easy to lose!)
  2. Buy good walking shoes. Whether you’re walking for exercise or walking to the restroom, running or walking shoes are fine as long as they keep your ankles stable. Running shoes have more cushion in the heels; walking shoes, more arch support. For the comfiest fit, shop in the afternoon, when your feet are slightly swollen.
  3. Sit less, walk more. Walk -- don't sit -- while you talk on the phone. Also, put an exercise machine in front of every TV, and a portable pedal machine under your desk at work.
  4. Walk farther each week. Increase your steps 10% a week. Even if you begin walking at 3,000 steps, in less than 6 months you'll be up to 10,000. Ready for 3 more ways to boost the benefits of walking?

Learn how walking for exercise and other tips can blast belly fat in no time.