EXERCISE: Give walking back to happiness a try

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For those who find winter a depressing time, my advice would be to get walking.

Walking has many benefits for our health, but less frequently discussed is how it helps us to remain positive and happy.

In fact, walking has been shown to reduce the risk of developing depression by 20 per cent.

Walking for just part of the journey to work can significantly boost our happiness levels, which is especially important during the winter months when many of us get up, travel in the dark and can find it hard to incorporate activity into the day.

It stimulates endorphins, which help to improve sleep quality and reduce feelings of stress.

Walking is free, accessible and easy to build into everyday life.

Research suggests that active people are 30 per cent less likely to feel distressed and 30 per cent more likely to experience enhanced levels of wellbeing.

Tompion Platt

Head of Policy and Research at Living Streets