A new study published in the journal Stroke has found a link between regular walking and a reduced risk of stroke for women.
The research, conducted as part of the European Prospective Investigation Into Cancer and Nutrition, included over 13,000 men and nearly 20,000 women aged between 29 and 69 years old, based in Spain. The questionnaire given to the participants was designed to determine the hours dedicated to different types of physical activity every week and to test the association with cerebrovascular diseases.
During a follow-up period of 12 years, a total of 442 strokes were registered from the men and women who took part in the study. The results showed that women who walked for over three and a half hours every week were 43% less likely to suffer a stroke than women who did not engage in any physical activity. They were also a lower stroke risk than women who walked less regularly.
The study found no significant link between other leisure time activities or vigorous physical activity and cerebrovascular diseases in either women or men. Overall, the research concluded that whilst moderate recreational physical activity helped reduce stroke risk in women, physical activity was not associated with stroke risk in men.
Women dedicating more time to activities such as walking are likely to reduce stroke incidences for their sex, the study added.
This is the latest study that shows an association between physical activity and a reduced risk of stroke, which can be a result of plaque built up in arteries or ruptured brain blood vessels.