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KEY POINTS:

1. We’re in the midst of the Inactivity Epidemic: The average adult spends 9-10 hours sitting each day.

2. The more you sit, the more likely you are to developing chronic illnesses, including obesity, type 2 diabetes, and cancer.

3. The good news: you don’t need to do much physical activity to reduce your risk of getting these illnesses.

4. 1% changes - such as 15 minutes of walking each day - reduces your risk of getting breast and colon cancer by 24-50%.

“If we could give every individual the right amount of nourishment and exercise - not too little and not too much - we would have found the safest way to health.” – Hippocrates

A new drug has been discovered with such broad ranging powers that it may end up being the cure for all human disease. Early reports suggest that it can be used to prevent and treat almost every chronic disease faced by humans. The list of benefits of taking this drug are truly amazing:

This drug has been shown to;

·      lower your risk of certain types of cancer by 24-50%,

·      prevent and treat cardiovascular disease,

·      reverse type 2 diabetes,

·      reduce the number of cold and flu infections that you get by 75%,

·      prevent osteoporosis,

·      alleviate depression and anxiety,

·      prevent Alzheimer’s disease

·      improve memory, learning, problem solving and concentration,

·      make you happier.

There is only one catch to this drug. You have to take it almost every day for the rest of your life. You have to be consistent. If you do that you’re guaranteed to get the benefits. Have you figured it out yet? This “drug” is exercise. It does all of the above and much, much, more. Are you in?

But, once again the world is faced with a grand challenge – the inactivity epidemic.

As with the challenges we face with when it comes to eating well, it’s not easy to build exercise into our day. And many of our daily tasks are killing us. We commute to and from work using our cars or public transportation. Most of us have desk jobs. Students sit for hours in class.

The British Medical Journal reports that the average adult spends between 9-10 hours sitting each day. That’s a lot of sedentary behaviour! And it happens because our world is built to sit us down. Which means that our world is also built to make us sick.

We now know that sitting is an independent risk factor for chronic illnesses, including cancer. Basically, the more sedentary you are, the sicker you will probably get. Consider that a recent review of 43 studies analyzing daily activity and cancer rates found that people who reported sitting for more hours of the day had a 24% greater risk of developing colon cancer, a 32% higher risk of endometrial cancer and a 21% higher risk of lung cancer—regardless of how much they exercised.

The more you sit, the higher your chances of developing a chronic illness like obesity, type 2 diabetes or cancer. But so many of us have to sit during the day for our jobs, during our commutes or in school. So what’s one to do?

We need to move more – and move more consistently.

Short bouts of activity throughout your day can supercharge your health and performance. Fifteen minutes of exercise – like a short walk – can increase your ability to concentrate and problem solve. Fifteen minutes of walking each day reduces your risk of breast and colon cancer by 24-50%.

Remember, it’s all about being 1% better and learning from the extremes of human health and performance. Fortunately, the idea that exercise is medicine is exploding around the world. Researchers and clinicians are now discovering powerful links between movement and health. We’re going to spend some time together exploring these links. 

Today's POWER-UP: Sprinkle movement into your day 

1. FOLLOW THE 20/20 RULE: FOR EVERY 20 MINUTES OF SITTING, STAND AND STRETCH FOR 20 SECONDS.

2. IF YOU TAKE PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION TO WORK, STAND UP INSTEAD OF SITTING DOWN.