Stronger physical activity policy could prevent 12,000 deaths: report
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Stronger physical activity policy could prevent 12,000 deaths: report

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A series of practical policy interventions to tackle physical inactivity could prevent nearly 12,000 deaths by 2025, according to a new report.

Researchers have found that if the government prioritised walking and cycling in urban environments, supported more community activity providers and offered behavioural change advice services in more GP practices, around 11,600 deaths could be prevented by 2025. In addition, such measures would reduce the number of years the population spends living with disability by 98,000.

The report comes at a time when there is growing impetus for exercise intervention to become a central pillar of primary care. ukactive recently called for exercise professionals to be embedded in all GP clinics and job centres to help tackle the UK’s inactivity crisis – which is estimated to cost the economy £20bn per year.

The new Living Longer, Living Well report, commissioned by The Richmond Group of charities, examined the effect of preventable conditions on the UK population. Through intervention modelling, it found that tougher measures to tackle smoking, harmful alcohol consumption, poor diet and physical inactivity could prevent a combined total of 250,000 deaths by 2025.

Based on the findings of the study, the Richmond Group are calling for a bold new vision whereby the government, public services, businesses and charities work together to find and enact solutions which can improve the physical and mental health of thousands of people for the better.

“Poor diets and low levels of physical activity are fuelling the rise in serious health conditions such as Type 2 diabetes, cancer, and cardiovascular disease that we are currently seeing,” said Chris Askew, CEO of Diabetes UK.

“We live in an environment where making sustained healthy choices can be extremely difficult, but this study demonstrates again that strong and far reaching measures will lead to people living healthier and longer lives.”

To read the full Living Longer, Living Well report click here.

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A series of practical policy interventions to tackle physical inactivity could prevent nearly 12,000 deaths by 2025, according to a new report.
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