Saturday, 17 November, 2018

World Health Organization issues warning regarding level of inactivity worldwide

Pekic via Getty Images Pekic via Getty Images
Ben Pena | 08 September, 2018, 13:15

Regular physical inactivity is linked to poor health, increased risk of heart disease, several types of cancers, diabetes, mental health problems etc.

In 2016, physical activity varied across income groups: Just 16% of people surveyed in low-income countries revealed an inadequate amount of exercise, compared with 37% in high-income countries.

-At least 34 per cent of India's population is insufficiently active, The levels of insufficient activity were higher among women at 48 per cent, while the prevalence was 22 per cent among men, says the study.

According to the World Health Organization, in Kuwait, Saudi Arabi, Iraq and American Samoa, more than half of the population doesn't get enough exercise.

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

"Unlike other major global health risks, levels of insufficient physical activity are not falling worldwide, on average, and over a quarter of all adults are not reaching the recommended levels of physical activity for good health", said Regina Guthold of the WHO, who co-led the research.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) says insufficient physical activity is a leading risk factor for non-communicable disease, negatively impacting mental health and overall quality of life.

The report's authors warned that as things stood the WHO's 2025 target of reducing global inactivity by 10% would be missed.

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The new report found that around the world, 32 percent of women and 23 percent of men don't get enough exercise, even when accounting for time spent walking or biking to work and physical activity on the job.

Physical inactivity is defined by experts as less than 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise, or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity exercise, per week.

4 out of 10 Irish women aren't getting enough exercise.

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

Women were less active than men in all but East and South-East Asia, with the biggest differences being in South Asia, Central Asia, the Middle East, north Africa and high-income Western countries.

In four countries, more than half of adults were insufficiently active - Kuwait (67%), American Samoa (53%), Saudi Arabia (53%), and Iraq (52%).

The study detailed the levels of insufficient physical activity in different countries and estimates global and regional trends. As a next step the researchers would work on assessing the levels of activities among the children and youth. In it, she said in certain parts of the world women face more environmental, social and cultural barriers to participate in physical activity.

The study's release comes ahead of the Third United Nations General Assembly High-level Meeting on NCDs and their risk factors, including physical inactivity, being held on 27 September 2018 in NY.

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