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A new study in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine has shown that even a small increase in physical activity can lower the risk of developing sleep apnea. The study analyzed lifestyle, medical, socio-demographic and sleep patterns of over 155,000 adults. Nearly 7% of all participants had a sleep apnea diagnosis, and were more likely to lead inactive lifestyles. When comparing those with sleep apnea to those without, researchers found that even a 10% increase in physical activity (like walking) lowered the risk of developing sleep apnea.

Adding an extra 20 minutes to your daily walk, or an extra 8 minutes to more intense activities is enough to lower your risk of sleep apnea. With rates of the sleep disorder increasing amongst children and adults, it is important to understand how we can best protect ourselves and our sleep. So start walking your way to a better night’s sleep!