“To lose weight, you have to take at least 10,000 steps a day.”

You may have heard of this popular fitness tip. Especially if you’re part of the least-active members of society who still want to lose weight. According to those who swear by this regimen, taking 10,000 steps a day has a lot of health benefits. Well, besides helping you shed those unwanted pounds. The 10k-steps regimen also strengthens your heart and helps you live longer.

However, there’s just one small problem. The number isn’t really based on scientific evidence.

Where did it begin?

Taking 10,000 steps a day to lose weight seems like a pretty good deal. After all, it’s quite easy to accomplish, and everyone can do it. As people say, it’s the ultimate one-size-fits-all exercise advice.

The concept actually began as a marketing strategy. Back in 1964, a Japanese company wanted to ride the trend of the 1964 Summer Olympics, which was held in the country then. They were selling pedometers called “manpo-kei”. In English, it meant “10,000 step meter”. Since then, the pedometer has become an essential part of health and wellness culture.

What is the truth?

From a medical point-of-view, there is no recommended daily step count. In fact, most doctors recommend a minimum of 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week. Moderate exercise includes easy jogging, bicycling, leisure swimming, and brisk walking, among others. For walkers, this means you have to walk at least 1.5 miles (2 km), or take at least 3,000 steps a day.

Despite this, many medical doctors still prefer to recommend the10,000 steps a day regimen. Especially to patients who are attempting to control their blood pressure, and weight gain. This is because taking 10,000 steps a day still showed some health benefits. As published in a study done back in 2000. People who underwent the regimen showed positive results in lowering their blood pressure and improving their overall health. Besides, researchers believe that completing 10,000 steps in a day is quite an achievable goal.

Don’t forget, exercise is just a part of the whole keeping healthy and losing weight equation. You should also focus on proper nutrition.

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