With the popularity of 10,000 steps, researchers decided to find whether that amount actually results in a longer life.
A 2020 study of adults over age 40 found that a greater number of steps per day was significantly associated with lower all-cause mortality. Participants who took 8,000 steps per day, compared with 4,000 steps per day, had significantly lower rates of death from cardiovascular disease and cancer.
A 2019 study of older women found that as few as 4,400 steps per day was significantly related to lower mortality rates compared with 2,700 steps per day. However, with more steps per day, mortality rates progressively decreased before leveling at approximately 7,500 steps per day.
Research findings suggest that 7,500-8,000 steps per day result in a longer life, but that even around 4,000 is beneficial compared to lesser amounts.
In other words, it doesn’t have to be 10,000 steps. Even if you just add a little more movement to your day, it can make a difference.
If you’re not sure where to start, try setting a daily step goal that is doable. You can always work your way up to more. If you start with small goals, it’s easier to stick with so it can become a new habit. It’s estimated that 2,000 steps equals one mile. Can you do an extra 1 or 2,000 steps a day?