New research suggests that wearing a pedometer can significantly increase a person's daily physical activity, which in turn can lower weight and blood pressure. Pedometers, small devices worn on the hip that count steps, can cost as little as $15. Overall, pedometer users increased their physical activity by 26.9%, according to the study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.
That's an average of 2,190 steps per day, the equivalent of more than a mile. The study found significant drops in blood pressure, which translates into fewer deaths from strokes and vascular diseases. Researchers estimate that if 10% of Americans followed a walking program, the country could save $5.6 billion in heart disease costs.