The benefits of physical activity and exercise have been proven for a long time. However, a new study has shown how you can extend your life with just 20 minutes of your time.

Physical inactivity is consistently associated with a high risk of death, as well as the development of heart disease and cancer. Although body mass index depends on the level of physical activity, the association of physical activity with early death does not depend on BMI.

To determine the association between low physical activity, early mortality and obesity, researchers analyzed data from 334,161 European men and women who participated in the European Prospective Study on Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC). In this study, experts measured the height, weight, waist circumference and physical activity levels of volunteers for more than 12 years. The results of the study are published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

Researchers have found that just 20 minutes of brisk walking a day, during which about 90-110 calories are burned, can reduce the risk of premature death by 16-30%. The greatest benefits of such walking were observed in people with normal weight, but even in participants with a high BMI, there were some improvements.

Using the latest available mortality data in Europe, the authors of the study estimate that 337,000 of the 9.2 million deaths of European women and men are attributable to obesity (BMI over 30). However, low physical activity is twice as likely to cause such deaths.

The conclusion is simple: even a 20-minute walk will bring considerable benefits to your body. Of course, the more physically active a person is, the healthier he is. Therefore, daily physical activity should become an integral part of a healthy and long life for you.


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