Both doctors and trainers keep saying we should get regular exercise in order to stay healthy, but who has the time to do this? According to a new study, however, the moderately active lifestyle may be as good as exercising at the gym for overall health.
The moderate physical activity such as taking the stairs, walking the dog or managing the garden, throughout the day may actually have the same benefits as a trip to gym. According to the federal physical activity guidelines in the United States, people should get at least 30 minutes of exercise daily in order to stay generally healthy and improve various health conditions. A lot of people say they don’t have enough time for structured, regular exercise. But the study published in the American Journal of Health Promotion suggests that we don’t need to go to the gym in order to exercise – incorporating the movement into everyday life can provide these 30 minutes, or even more.
Study author Paul Loprinzi and his team of the Oregon State University followed more than 6,000 American adults and their habits of exercise and physical activity. The active lifestyle approach showed the same health benefits as the structural exercise. It could lower or prevent high blood pressure, high cholesterol and even the so called metabolic syndrome. This is a group of risk factors that are known to increase the risk of type 2 diabetes, heart attack and coronary artery disease. According to the results, 43 percent of adults having short stretches of physical activity during the day met the federal guidelines. And even less than 10 percent of those who exercised longer could meet the guidelines for about 30 minutes of daily exercise.
The researchers point out that an exercise plan for a particular period of time doesn’t work well. Only when physical activity becomes part of your lifestyle, you can expect some results. People who don’t have the ambition to become Olympic athletes don’t need to go to fitness centers daily. The most natural way to stay in shape and in good overall health is just to walk and move more.