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Walking your dog: good way to keep physical health

03-15-2011 14:03 BJT

BEIJING, March 14 (Xinhuanet)—People who own and walk dogs regularly are more likely to meet physical activity guidelines, according to new study published in the Journal of Physical Activity and Health.

Pet dogs attend the "My Dog Loves Central Park" country fair in Central Park,
New York, the United States, Oct. 17, 2010. (Xinhua File Photo)

The survey, conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Michigan Department of Community Health, found that dog owners who walked their dogs least 150 minutes per week are 34 percent more likely to meet U.S. federal benchmarks for physical activity.

In addition to giving people an opportunity to increase physical activity, owning and walking a dog also seems to encourage more active lifestyles.

"Obviously you would expect dog walkers to walk more, but we found people who walked their dogs also had higher overall levels of both moderate and vigorous physical activities," said Mathew Reeves, an epidemiologist at Michigan State University.

"There appears to be a strong link between owning and walking a dog and achieving higher levels of physical activity, even after accounting for the actual dog walking," Reeves added.

Besides the above benefits, owning a dog can help lower blood pressure and cholesterol, according to previous studies.

Editor:Zheng Limin |Source: Xinhua

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