Inactivity: The New Public Health Crisis?

By Kennedi Rose / November 19, 2015

Everyone knows that with regular exercise and a healthy lifestyle, we can ward off many diseases. Whether it’s running, walking or cycling, exercise tones our muscles and improves our mood. Unfortunately, when we decide to plop down in front of the television and be couch potatoes, the negative effects can be even worse than we thought.
With obesity and inactivity quickly becoming an overwhelming problem, a lack of exercise has clearly contributed to an elevated risk factor of developing many deadly diseases such as cardiovascular disease. People who are overweight and work in sedentary jobs are at an extremely high risk for developing serious medical issues.

Unfortunately, the crisis of inactivity doesn’t only affect adults. Children are also exercising less while spending their time in front of a computer or playing video games. Childhood inactivity has been cited as the number one reason for the increase in obesity in children.

Health Risks

There are many health risks associated with inactivity to include:

  • A higher risk of developing hypertension.
  • A lack of physical activity can increase the risk of developing certain types of cancers.
  • Inactivity has been associated with depression and anxiety.

Interestingly, overweight and individuals considered to be obese were found to have a reduced risk of diseases when compared to their thinner counterparts. This was due to the activity levels and even though they needed to lose weight, they were healthier than those who inactive most of the time.

The Remedy

Even though it seems like an easy fix, many people aren’t inclined to change their habits. It’s a good idea to remember that when shopping for health insurance, being in good physical health is important. In addition, staying healthy and active enables you to enjoy life to the fullest while counteracting many potentially deadly diseases.

Getting started with an exercise regimen is easier than you think. It’s as simple as putting down the remote control and going outside for a walk. Ironically, you don’t have to break a sweat to get in shape and add years to your life. Simply walking at a brisk pace for 30 minutes or more each day makes a huge difference. There are plenty of great guides online on how to begin exercise, with many healthcare providers also offering advice as part of their service. Additionally, small changes in your daily routine adds up as well. For example, take the stairs instead of the lift when possible, or exit the tube a few stops before yours and walk to work.

Encourage children to play outside and limit computer and video game use. Although they will not be happy, they will thank you for it later. Teaching them to stay active is paving the way for a healthier way of living in the future. By implementing subtle changes into your daily routine, you can make a dramatic difference in your overall health.

About the author

Kennedi Rose

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