New fitness mantra for lazy bones: Sweat it out for 1 hr

New fitness mantra for lazy bones: Sweat it out for 1 hr

For healthy adult Indians, the recommendation is to have 60 minutes of physical activity daily in view of their high predisposition for development of diabetes and heart disease. The activity should include aerobics, work-related activity and muscle strengthening.

For sedentary individuals, gradual escalation of physical activity is recommended after pre-activity medical evaluation, especially in those with chronic diseases.

The new guidelines appear to be more stringent than what the doctors say usually. Based on Western data, the doctors generally advise half-an-hour of physical exercise at least for five days in a week. Of course, those who are health freaks do much more.

“No physical exercise guideline is available for Indian doctors. Somebody says 30 minutes, some others suggest 45 minutes. Based on our study of Indian patients, we recommended 60 minutes,”Anoop Misra, a former professor at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences here who led the initiative told Deccan Herald.

A large majority of Indians are sedentary. Given that every family in India has 1-2 persons with diabetes and heart disease, exercise should be on the top of agenda for every Indian, said Misra who is currently with Fortis Hospital. “These guidelines will show the correct way of doing exercise and in right intensity and amount. It will help doctors, obesity and diabetes specialists and exercise therapists in using exercise as a preventive and therapeutic option in a scientific manner,” he said.

For children and adolescents, a minimum of one hour — and sometimes more — of moderate intensity physical activity on a daily basis would achieve the health benefits. Preferably these activities should be in the form of sports.

The screen time for children — watching television or playing video games or using computers — should be less than two hours in a day, said the experts who finalised the physical guidelines in a meeting supported by the department of science and technology. Representatives of Indian Council for Medical Research were part of the consultation process.

Sedentary children can start with 30 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity daily. Jumping and resistance training are also important for the kids. For the obese, the recommendation is to do moderate intensity aerobic exercise for an hour every day or vigorous intensity exercise for one hour for three or more days in a week. Once an individual loses weight, the same level of exercise should continue.

Pregnant women, heart disease and diabetes patients and the elderly, should fix the exercise regimen in consultation with the doctor. While moderate exercise has been suggested for pregnant women, for those who crossed 16 weeks of gestation period exercising in a supine condition is a strict no-no.

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