As you age, your chances of winding up with knee osteoarthritis (OA) are pretty much the flip of a coin.
HALF of all adults will develop this "wear and tear" kind of arthritis -- and if you've wound up on the unlucky end of this coin toss, you already know how painful it can be.
When you feel that sting with every step, who could blame you for wanting to take shortcuts from points A to B?
But you may not be any better off taking a ride than hoofing it on your own two feet.
Because according to a new study, walking WON'T worsen your knee OA or increase your pain any more than hitching a ride.
In the study out of Northwestern University, a group of older folks -- some of whom had knee OA -- played two rounds of golf on two different days, one using a golf cart and the other walking the course.
When researchers compared the participants' pain scores in round one to those in round two, they found no significant difference between how much pain they had walking the course versus riding in the cart.
That means taking a "load off" in the cart DIDN'T make their golf game any less painful.
What's more, when the researchers compared the participants' blood markers of stress and inflammation in each round, it turned out that both walking and taking the cart increased these markers by an EQUAL amount.
Translation: Taking the cart didn't even spare them any extra "wear and tear!"
Now, you might think that means that riding a golf cart is just as good as strolling your way to the 19th hole… but not so fast.
Riding the cart offered NO benefits – so walking had the edge over the golf cart.
When the participants walked the course, they spent more than 60 percent of the round with their heart rates in the "moderate intensity" zone, a measure of how much cardiovascular exercise they were getting.
In contrast, zipping around in the cart only sent their heart rates into that beneficial zone for 30 percent of the round.
And walking has a bundle of other benefits that just might improve your condition, because that extra exercise boost that you get from walking isn't just good for your heart... it's also good for your knees.
Exercise has been shown to decrease inflammation and help you shed pounds -- and we know that both putting out the "flames" and losing weight can significantly lessen your knee OA pain .
So, when you're teeing up, don’t take the easy way out -- put one foot in front of the other!
This afternoon, I’ll give you even more reason to keep those legs moving. The benefit may surprise you!
Keep an eye out.