Obviously health care doesn’t only mean sickness treatment. Avoiding sickness is much better than treating it. Sadly we spend far too little energy on creating health and far too much on treating sickness.
Physical activity guidelines for adults (follow link for more details and guidelines for others) from the UK National Health Service
- At least 150 minutes (2 hours and 30 minutes) of moderate-intensity aerobic activity such as cycling or fast walking every week, or
- 75 minutes (1 hour and 15 minutes) of vigorous-intensity aerobic activity such as running or a game of singles tennis every week
- and muscle-strengthening activities on 2 or more days a week that work all major muscle groups (legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, shoulders and arms).
So rather than stressing the health benefits of exercise, the Lancet researchers have opted to show the harm caused by inactivity. They estimate lack of exercise is responsible for about 5.3m deaths a year – about the same number as smoking.
This is based on estimates of the impact on inactivity on coronary heart disease, Type 2 diabetes, and two specfic cancers – breast and bowel – where lack of exercise is a major risk factor.
Related: Today, Most Deaths Caused by Lifetime of Inaction – Study Finds Obesity as Teen as Deadly as Smoking – Can Just A Few Minutes of Exercise a Day Prevent Diabetes? – An Apple a Day is Good Advice
Effect of physical inactivity on major non-communicable diseases worldwide: an analysis of burden of disease and life expectancy