a great backdrop for a ride!
The problem is that when there are many demands on our time, many people find prioritising exercise difficult. One answer is to multi-task by cycling or walking to work. We’ve just completed the largest ever study into how this affects your health.
Published in the British Medical Journal today, the results for cycling in particular have important implications. They suggest that councils and governments need to make it a top priority to encourage as many commuters to get on their bikes as possible.'
'We found that cycling to work was associated with a 41% lower risk of dying overall compared to commuting by car or public transport. Cycle commuters had a 52% lower risk of dying from heart disease and a 40% lower risk of dying from cancer. They also had 46% lower risk of developing heart disease and a 45% lower risk of developing cancer at all.
Walking to work was not associated with a lower risk of dying from all causes. Walkers did, however, have a 27% lower risk of heart disease and a 36% lower risk of dying from it.'
Walking to work has some of the benefits of cycling but they are less marked. This may be that for most people cycling is more strenuous exercise than walking. Also people may well consider longer distances and for longer than they would walk.
More recently Christian Wolmar posted this plea for Labour to promote cycling:
Ideally the desire to promote the substantial benefits of cycling should have all party support and not be contentious. Being more active would bring such advantages:
The UK has the highest level of obesity in Western Europe, ahead of countries such as France, Germany, Spain and Sweden, the 2013 report says.
Obesity levels in the UK have more than trebled in the last 30 years and, on current estimates, more than half the population could be obese by 2050.
Europe's obesity league:
- UK: 24.9%
- Ireland: 24.5%
- Spain: 24.1%
- Portugal: 21.6%
- Germany: 21.3%
- Belgium: 19.1%
- Austria: 18.3%
- Italy: 17.2%
- Sweden: 16.6%
- France: 15.6%