Alzheimer’s Australia and the Heart Foundation have teamed up to highlight how the simple act of walking can help people reduce their risk of death from heart disease and dementia.
Working together, the two charities have produced Step to it – Why walking matters, which highlights the importance of physical activity, particularly walking, for brain and heart health.
The joint initiative of Alzheimer’s Australia and the National Heart Foundation has stressed the need to limit sedentary behaviour and suggested that even low impact, inexpensive activities such as walking can have a noticeable impact on our health.
“Heart disease and dementia are two of the leading causes of death in Australia and share some key common risk factors,” CEO of Alzheimer’s Australia Glenn Rees AM said.
“This resource highlights what we all know – that walking is good for our health. The challenge now is to get Australians moving.
“So many of us use the excuse that we are too busy, but by including walking in our daily routines, we can improve the health of our brains and our hearts.”
The Heart Foundation’s National CEO, Mary Barry said: “The simple act of walking for 30 minutes a day or more can reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease by as much as half.
“Walking is one of the easiest ways to increase the amount of physical activity in our daily lives and reach the recommended 30-45 minutes a day on most days of the week.
“Taking simple steps such as taking the stairs instead of the lift at work, taking public transport instead of driving or parking a few blocks away from where you need to go, can all add up.
“We also recommend joining a group with friends- it’s one of the best ways to stick to a walking routine and is good for people’s wellbeing as well. The Heart Foundation Walking program has more than 1300 groups set up across the country that are free to join,” said Ms Barry.
The new brochure Step to it – Why walking matters can be found on the Alzheimer’s Australia Your Brain Matters website, yourbrainmatters.org.au, and the Heart Foundation website, heartfoundation.org.au.
To find a Heart Foundation Walking group in your local area, call the Heart Foundation’s Health Information Service on 1300 36 27 87 or visit www.heartfoundation.org.au/walking.
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