Behind the headlines
The Daily Express reported that a short burst of activity involved in walking or cycling to work can dramatically slash the risks of developing diabetes and high blood pressure.
The article was based on research from Imperial College London and University College London, which examined data from a survey of 20,000 commuters across the UK. They found people who walk to work are 40 per cent less likely to have diabetes than those who drive.
Cycling, walking and using public transport were all linked with a lower risk of being overweight than driving. People who walk to work were also 17 per cent less likely than those who drive to have high blood pressure, and cyclists were half as likely to have diabetes as drivers.
Diabetes UK says
Robin Hewings, Head of Policy at Diabetes UK, said: “This study highlights that being physicallyactive can help reduce your risk of Type 2 diabetes. This is why Diabetes UK recommends that the best way to reduce your risk of Type 2 diabetes is by combining physical activity with a healthy, balanced diet that is low in salt, fat and sugar, and rich in fruit and vegetables. “Walking to work is a great way to improve your overall health.
“We recommend people walk where possible in place of a car or public transport. But it is not just about individuals. The study shows there are big regional variations in how people travel to work. Planning and infrastructure policies are a very important way to help make the healthy choice the easy choice. Since April, local government has had responsibility for public health and they need to act on this evidence.”