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More and More Americans Are Walking for Exercise

o5com, flickr

As a whole, the US has an obesity problem — but the good news is that more of us are getting up off the couch and talking a walk.

A new report from the CDC says 62 percent of American adults reported walking for at least 10 minutes during the week prior to a 2010 survey — a six percent increase from the 56 percent who said the same thing in 2005.

While the Western states have the largest number of walkers, the South saw the biggest increase in the percentage of people who reported walking, up from 49 percent to 57 percent over the five-year period. In addition, there’s been a 10 percent rise in the number of Southern men who take a stroll.

But although things are moving in the right direction, there’s still room for improvement. The CDC recommends that adults get at least 2.5 hours of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity a week, yet only about half do so.

Since walking is easy and free, Joan M. Dorn of the CDC’s Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity and Obesity, said additional access to safe and convenient places to walk — like trails or school gyms and tracks — would go a long way toward making US residents healthier.


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