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Health Line

AS long as they burn calories, women who walk can cut their heart disease risk regardless of how fast they move, researchers have said.

In fact, the time spent walking seems to be more important than pace, according to I-Min Lee of Harvard Medical School in Boston, Massachusetts.

When Lee and her colleagues examined exercise habits among nearly 40.000 women aged 45 and older, they found that calorie burning, but not walking pace, was linked to heart disease risk. Lee presented her findings at the annual meeting of the American College of Sports Medicine. "As long as you begin walking, you can reduce your heart disease risk," Lee said.

In the study, Lee's team followed the women for five years. The researchers found that women who burned more than 600 calories a week through exercise of any kind were about half as likely as women who burned less than 200 calories to have heart disease. It did not matter, however, whether they burned the calories through intense or moderate activity.

Among women who walked regularly - by far the most common exercise- the amount of time spent walking determined the heart benefit. Those who typically walked an hour or more had about half the heart disease risk of those who walked less than an hour.

As reported in Business Line News Service
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