WEDNESDAY, Aug. 7, 2013 (MedPage Today) — Active modes of traveling to work, such as walking or biking, were associated with a lower likelihood of obesity and diabetes, U.K. researchers found.
Compared with using driving a car or taking a taxi, walking to work was associated with a 20% reduced risk of being obese and a 40% reduced risk of diabetes, according to Anthony Laverty, MSc, of the Imperial College London, and colleagues. Those who cycled to work had a 37% lower risk of obesity and a 50% lower risk of diabetes.
Only walking to work was associated with a decreased risk of hypertension compared with driving, they wrote online in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.
The authors noted that obesity and excess weight are common to roughly 62% of the English population, as is hypertension in 30% and diabetes in 5.5%. They added that active travel promotes physical activity and produces an environmental net benefit.
Past research has shown that walking and biking to work were associated with reduced blood pressure, insulin, and levels of triglycerides. Also, in a study of female nurses who walked or biked to work, active transporters gained less weight than those who didn't use such active methods of going to work.
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