Health Care

Launch of new global estimates on levels of physical activity in adults

Launch of new global estimates on levels of physical activity in adults”

With physical activity, a better muscular and cardiorespiratory health, improved bone health, increased weight management, as well as a lower risk of hypertension, heart problems, strokes, diabetes, depression and various types of cancer, can be obtained.

People who do not meet this guideline are at greater risk of developing cardiovascular disease, Type 2 diabetes, dementia and some cancers, research shows.

At least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity physical activity each week is the recommended level for adults, according to the World Health Organization.

The highest levels of physical inactivity was seen in women from Latin America and the Caribbean (43.7 percent) followed by those in south Asia (43 percent) and among high income Western countries (42.3 percent).

Women were less active than men, with an over 8 per cent difference at the global level (32 per cent men vs 23 per cent women). The highest were 67 percent in Kuwait, 53 percent in American Samoa, 53 percent in Saudi Arabia and 52 percent in Iraq.

Australia ranked 97-out-of-168 countries involved in the study for the number of people being sufficiently active.

Dr Guthold added: "Regions with increasing levels of insufficient physical activity are a major concern for public health and the prevention and control of noncommunicable diseases".

The Ministry recognises physical activity as an important determinant of health.

The researchers point out that as countries prosper, the amount of occupation and domestic activity decline as more people work sedentary jobs, technology increases, public transport is more accessible and personal vehicles are more attainable. It has been reported that among other countries, it is the high-income ones like the United Kingdom where people are most inactive. In comparison, east and southeast Asia recorded the largest decrease in insufficient activity, from 26 percent in 2001 to 17 percent in 2016, which was largely influenced by uptake of physical activity in China.

The study also said that there has been no improvement in global levels of physical activity since 2001.

The authors called for a significant increase in national action is urgently needed in most countries to scale-up implementation of effective policies.

"We definitely haven't done enough" to encourage people to exercise, the lead study author of WHO, Regina Guthold, told AFP. Publication of levels of participation in children and young people are forthcoming. "What is needed are progressive, large-scale, multilevel interventions, especially targeting women, that create safe and culturally acceptable opportunities for physical activity and empower women to participate in physical activity", she writes.

"Unlike other major global health risks, levels of insufficient physical activity are not falling worldwide", Dr.

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