Ditch the Car: Walking or Cycling to Work Cuts Diabetes Risk

Brisk Walking Lowers Heart Related Diseases as Much As Running

If you live near your work or in an area where it may be possible to take public transit, might as well be best for your health to ditch the car and use your limbs.

According to a recent study, researchers at Imperial College and London University College London found that those who walk to work are nearly 40 percent less likely to have diabetes.

For the study, they examined how various health indicators related to how people get to work by using data from a survey of 20,000 people across the UK.

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They also found that cycling, walking and using public transit were often associated with a lower risk of being overweight than driving or possibly taking a taxi. People who walk to work in fact were up to 17 percent less likely than people who drive to have high blood pressure. Researchers found that cyclists were around half as likely to have diabetes as drivers as well.

“This study highlights that building physical activity into the daily routine by walking, cycling or using public transport to get to work is good for personal health ,” said Anthony Laverty, from the School of Public Health at Imperial College London, via the press release.

Background information from the study shows that only nineteen percent of working age adults use private transportation, including cars, motorbikes or taxis in order to get to work, and thus, are obese.

In the United States, the numbers are much higher.

Yet the study concludes with the following, according to Laverty via the release that “the variations between regions suggest that infrastructure and investment in public transport, walking and cycling can play a large role in encouraging healthy lives, and that encouraging people out of the car can be good for them as well as the environment.”

More information regarding the study can be found in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine