WHO Warns: Nearly 1.8 Billion People at Risk Due to Physical Inactivity

Total Views : 48
Zoom In Zoom Out Read Later Print

If current trends persist, it is projected that by 2030, 35% of the global population will be inactive.

According to a recent report released on Wednesday, nearly 1.8 billion adults face increased risks of cancer, stroke, dementia, and diabetes due to insufficient exercise. The World Health Organization (WHO) highlighted that global physical inactivity has risen by five percentage points from 2010 to 2022, with approximately 31% of adults failing to meet exercise guidelines. The Lancet Global Health journal published the study, noting that 34% of women and 29% of men are inactive. If current trends persist, the report predicts that 35% of people will be inactive by 2030.

"Physical inactivity poses a significant but often overlooked threat to global health, contributing heavily to the burden of chronic diseases," remarked Ruediger Krech, director of WHO's health promotion department. "Regrettably, global progress in this area is not heading in the right direction."

Krech emphasized that reducing the risk of non-communicable diseases requires making physical activity accessible, affordable, and enjoyable. The WHO defines physical activity broadly, encompassing movement during leisure, transportation, work, or domestic activities. The organization recommends at least 150 minutes of moderate or 75 minutes of vigorous activity weekly. Moderate activities include brisk walking or heavy cleaning, while vigorous activities range from hiking to jogging.

WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus underscored the report's findings as an opportunity missed to mitigate cancer, heart disease, and improve mental well-being through increased physical activity. "We must renew our commitments to enhancing physical activity levels and prioritize bold actions, including stronger policies and increased funding, to reverse this concerning trend."

The report also noted that high-income countries are marginally reducing inactivity rates but remain off track in meeting targets.