WALK WITH ME series: walking boosts your immune system

Today is day 4 in these free series of “WALK WITH ME” and the topic of today is how walking boosts your immune system. Kind of the hottest topic for the moment when the world is battling CORONA.

During these challenging times of the Corona-virus threat I would like to invite you to go on a daily walk with me to stay healthy and positive. If you are still allowed to go outside then do so! If not you can walk with me on a treadmill of in place in front of your TV watching your favourite show. If you have a stationary bike that is fine also. As long as I can get you moving.

As long as necessary I will keep encouraging you to walk with me cause walking has sooo many benefits. Everyday I will motivate you by sharing one of these benefits to inspire you to walk with me. Follow me on facebook @takeyoutimeblog and instagram @takeyoutimeblog (or click the icons above) and let me help you to stay healthy, fit and positive during times of Corona.

Walking really boosts immune function and it will help protect you during the cold and flu season. A study of over 1,000 men and women found that those who walked at least 20 minutes a day, at least 5 days a week, had 43% fewer sick days than those who exercised once a week or less. (source: Harvard Medical School)

Another study, published at NCBI (link to full article HERE), measured several components of immune changes related to walking 30 min compared with sitting. First of all walking increased oxygen consumption. Secondly the pattern of increase in blood counts for neutrophils, lymphocytes, monocytes, and natural killer cells, plasma interleukin-6 concentration, and PHA-induced lymphocyte proliferation differed significantly when comparing walking with sitting.

Another study performed by David Nieman, a professor of public health and director of the Human Performance Lab at Appalachian State University confirms these findings. (full study HERE) Nieman examined the effect exercise has on our health and immune function. In one of his studies, he and his colleagues found that only 30 minutes of brisk walking increased the circulation of natural killer cells, white blood cells and other immune system warriors. When these immune cells meet an illness-causing pathogen, they are able to kill it. Unfortunately the effect only lasts for a short time and that is why we have to exercise and walk on a regular basis to maintain the immunity boost.

Below I show you some additional and logical explanations for the immune boosting effect:

  • Stress reduction: Walking reduces stress which is one of the causes of a weakened immune system. So when you walk more you will lover your stress levels and as a result you will give your immune system a boost.
  • Improved sleep: On day 3 I already explained that walking helps you to sleep better. Sleep is crucial in maintaining a healthy immune system.

So, put on your walking shoes and try to get regular, moderate exercise, like a daily 30-minute walk. Try to make that an hour a day and you will be in great health and shape. It can really help your immune system fight infection and viruses and promote a healthy and powerful immune system. So… what are you waiting for?

Hope I inspired you again to go outside walking today… stay at home, stay healthy, take care of each other. Together we can outsmart the corona-virus. (COVID-19)

So come and take a walk with me. I will see you here again tomorrow for day 5!

Big hug,

Lies Helsloot

P.S. please respect your local or federal laws around social distancing or restrictions around going outside or any other imposed rules. Those rules can save lives! So respect them! Keep your distance!