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Sarah Knapton, THE TELEGRAPH

 

(TheTelegraph.co.uk)—NHS guidelines which advise 150 minutes of exercise a week should be revised to take into account that even small amounts of activity have huge benefits, health experts have said.

Recent studies have shown that just 20 minutes of vigorous exercise a week is enough to significantly reduce the risk of dying prematurely and is far more achievable than current recommendations.

Writing in the British Medical Journal the authors claim current targets are beyond the reach of most people and doctors should promote the benefits of small increases in physical activity rather than expecting unattainable lifestyle changes.

Too much inactivity has been shown to increase the risk of diabetes, heart disease and cancer and more than one third of adults are dangerously inactive.

But Philipe de Souto Barreto from the Institute of Ageing at the University Hospital of Toulouse said health benefits can be achieved by people doing less than the recommended levels.

 

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