DENVER -- Whether you love to walk outside or on the treadmill at the gym, it’s worth it, according to new research.
A study of more than 73,000 postmenopausal women found that walking at a moderate pace for an hour a day can cut the risk of breast cancer by 14 percent.
American Cancer Society epidemiologist Alpa Patel sid this is great news for women who are looking to begin a healthier lifestyle.
"The nice message here is, you don't have to go out and run a marathon to lower your breast cancer risk," Patel said.
Doctors say walking benefits women of all ages because it keep estrogen levels in check. High levels can boost your risk of breast cancer.
“We think women who stay active break down estrogen differently," said Denver physician Kristen Woodward. "They change the ratio of certain types estrogen metabolites and that decreases the risk of breast cancer.”
Researchers say more women are likely to walk because it’s less intimidating, easy on the joints, accessible and inexpensive.
Studies show post-menopausal women who walked seven hours or more a week, even without engaging in other recreational physical activity, gained protection from disease. That’s compared to those who walked three hours or less a week.
Doctors said the best way to begin a walking routine is to try a few blocks then work your way up to a longer workout. Always be cautious about your environment, never walk alone at night, and wear clothing that is loose and comfortable.
Don’t forget to enjoy the scenery, doctors say a peaceful walk can do wonders for stress relief as well!