HomehealthMan's and Woman's Best Friend

Man's and Woman's Best Friend

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If you are a friend to Old Faithful, you may be on the path to sustained good health

If you are a friend to Old Faithful, you may be on the path to sustained good health. Researchers of an interesting study just out of the University of Missouri-Columbia decided to take a closer look at the health benefits of walking a dog. In particular, this study focused on changes in body weight among participants and whether or not their furry friend was seen as a motivator for continued participation in regular exercise.

Thirteen male and female participants aged 40 to 80 took part in the year-long study. The group began with walking a dog for 10 minutes, 3 times per week and worked their way up to 20 minutes 5 times per week. At the end of the study the mean weight loss for the group was almost 14.5 pounds, and participants described their relationship with their canine walking partner as having a positive impact on their lives and their desire to walk regularly. They stated that the dogs made walking a pleasant activity instead of a chore.

What to do if you don’t own or aren’t interested in owning a dog? Try contacting your local animal shelter and volunteer some time walking dogs. Or give your time to friends or neighbours by offering to walk their pets.

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Linda Barbara

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