HEALTH AND RESEARCH

Walk more to reduce pain and risk of arthritis - Experts

Walking is free, unlike mediations which come with a price tag and possibility of side effects.

In Summary

•Walking is free, unlike mediations which come with a price tag and possibility of side effects.

•Those who reported walking for exercise had 40% decreased odds of new frequent knee pain compared to non-walkers.

Old person walking
Old person walking
Image: Pixabay

For most people above 45 years, having knee pain is often common and for those diagnosed with knee osteoarthritis, the most common form of arthritis, the pain can be quite unbearable.

A new study published in Arthritis & Rheumatology led by researchers at Baylor College of Medicine reveals that walking for exercise can reduce new frequent knee pain and it may be an effective treatment to slow the damage that occurs within the joint.

"Until this finding, there has been a lack of credible treatments that provide benefit for both limiting damage and pain in osteoarthritis," said Dr. Grace Hsiao-Wei Lo, first author of the Study.

In their research participants who reported 10 or more instances of exercise from the age of 50 years or later were classified as "walkers" and those who reported less were classified as "non-walkers."

Those who reported walking for exercise had 40% decreased odds of new frequent knee pain compared to non-walkers.

Lo said that walking for exercise has added health benefits such as improved cardiovascular health and decreased risk of obesity, diabetes and some cancers, the driving reasons for the Center for Disease Control recommendations on physical activity, first published in 2008 and updated in 2018.

Walking for exercise is a free activity with minimal side effects, unlike medications, which often come with a substantial price tag and possibility of side effects.

"People diagnosed with knee osteoarthritis should walk for exercise, particularly if they do not have daily knee pain," advises Lo.

"If you already have daily knee pain, there still might be a benefit, especially if you have the kind of arthritis where your knees are bow-legged."

So do not forget to take your walk, today.