Do you want to lower weight and blood pressure, gain an extra boost with your diet, and optimize your efforts to get healthy? People have touted the benefits of using fitness trackers, but research from Stanford University has proven it.
Even better news? The Stanford study was created before the current digital fitness wave, and they identified an easy, low cost way to enhance your efforts that’s much cheaper than a Fitbit.
A simple, inexpensive pedometer can lead to important health benefits when used as part of a fitness program. An article in the Journal of the American Medical Association reviewed 26 previous studies on pedometer usage and weight loss, blood pressure, and activity level. The lead author of the study, Dr. Dena M. Bravata, found that individuals who wore a pedometer during a fitness program were more active, lost additional weight, and lowered their blood pressure to a greater degree than people who did not use a pedometer. Interestingly, they found that pedometer usage led to an average 2000 more steps—about one mile of walking—each day.
While there are many fitness trackers on the market now, not everyone is keen about saving all their information on these electronic devices. Pedometers predated this current trend of wearing fitness trackers, and for some they’re a better alternative.
A pedometer is a small device worn at the hip that counts the number of steps a person walks each day. They are typically small and very light. Pedometers are easy to use and can be found at most discount stores like Target or Walmart. Many companies give out free pedometers to their employees to improve fitness and lower health care costs. Typically pedometers are used as part of a program that sets a daily step goal. The typical goal is 10,000 steps each day.
Even more exciting is that the study found that the added weight loss in pedometer users was not fully explained by their extra activity. The authors hypothesize that this extra weight loss may be due to the pedometer serving to remind people to eat less and make healthy choices.
Whether you like the modern fitness tracker or the older pedometers, the bottom line is that they’re a great tool. They help you get to at least 10,000 steps everyday, and lead you on a path toward better help.
Source: Stanford University