It’s no surprise that exercise is good for your heart.
But did you know that even small amounts of walking could make a big difference, especially for people with heart problems?
A recent study has found that people with heart failure can greatly improve their symptoms by walking between 1,000 and 5,000 steps a day.
That’s something that your smartwatch or other wearable device can help you keep track of!
Understanding Heart Failure
Heart failure is a condition where the heart can’t pump enough blood to the rest of the body.
This makes people feel very tired and out of breath, which can make it hard for them to do everyday tasks like walking or climbing stairs. Heart failure is a serious problem that can greatly impact a person’s quality of life.
In the study, researchers looked at data from 425 people with heart failure who were part of a trial for a diabetes medicine.
As part of this trial, the participants wore Fitbit Versa 2 devices to track how many steps they took each day.
The researchers found that people who walked 2,000 steps a day had fewer symptoms and were less limited in their activities than those who only walked 1,000 steps a day.
Even better, people who increased their daily step count over the 12 weeks of the trial seemed to improve even more.
The Role of Wearable Devices
This study highlights how useful wearable devices can be for managing heart failure. The devices can keep track of how much a person is moving and encourage them to walk more.
This kind of feedback can be very helpful for people with heart failure.
“I can imagine situations where these devices could potentially help us deliver advice or recommendations,” said Dr. Brahmajee Nallamothu, who led the study.
“By tracking how many steps a patient has taken, we might be able to use that information and intervene a little bit to say, you haven’t been moving as much this week as you were the week before.”
While the study shows a promising link between walking and improved heart health, it does have some limitations.
For example, walking more than 5,000 steps a day did not seem to provide any additional health benefits.
Also, it’s possible that people who felt better were more likely to walk more, rather than walking more causing them to feel better.
However, these findings still offer hope for people with heart failure. As the study suggests, even a little bit of walking could make a big difference.
And with the help of wearable devices, it might be easier than ever for people to take steps towards better heart health.
If you care about heart health, please read studies that vitamin K helps cut heart disease risk by a third, and a year of exercise reversed worrisome heart failure.
For more information about heart health, please see recent studies about supplements that could help prevent heart disease, stroke, and results showing this food ingredient may strongly increase heart disease death risk.
The study was published in JACC: Heart Failure.
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