01 August 2008

Regular physical activity has been shown to help prevent type 2 diabetes, osteoporosis, heart disease, and other chronic conditions. It is important for maintaining good health in all adults and children, regardless of whether their weight is a problem or not.

Lifestyle changes do not have to be drastic. Simple measures applied every day can make a significant difference over time. Here some activity you can do in your daily life to reduce your weight.
  • Limit time watching TV, playing computer and video games to less than two hours total per day. If its possible, use an exercise machine (such as a treadmill or bike) while watching TV.
  • Park at the far end of the parking lot and walk to your destination, rather than parking as close as possible.
  • Get off the bus one stop earlier and get walk for the rest way.
  • Take the stairs instead of the elevator.
  • Do more household chores.
  • Walk or run with the dog and/or the kids.
  • Take "active" vacations—go hiking or ride bicycles.
  • Walk to do errands (such as to the grocery store or post office) instead of driving.
  • Buy a pedometer, which measures how many steps you take each day. Gradually increase your daily number of steps.
  • Increase whatever physical activity you are currently doing by adding 10 minutes a day, or increase the intensity from low to moderate.

How Active Are You?

Moderate physical activityHard physical activityVery hard physical activity
Walking a mile in 10-20 min (4-5 mph)Walking or jogging (15 min/mile)Jogging (<10 min/mile)
GardeningMowing lawn with hand mowerDigging a ditch
Playing actively with childrenWeight liftingIn-line skating
Bicycling (8 mph)Bicycling (10 mph)Bicycling (> 12 mph)
Dancing or tai chiHigh impact aerobicsStep aerobics (6- to 8-in steps)
HikingPlaying doubles tennisPlaying singles tennis
Treading waterSwimming laps (light effort)Swimming laps (vigorous effort)
VacuumingMoving sofa or cupboard (furniture)Playing basketball or soccer

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