We have read and heard it time and again : our cars make us fat. All that time spent behind the wheel is just killing us. But is is really true or is it just a white (or green) lie from treehuggers ?
A study published in the British Medical Journal with no less than 7534 participants have shown that ” commuting by public or active transport modes was significantly and independently predictive of lower BMI for both men and women”
As Treehugger noted,” Men who take transit are about seven pounds lighter; women, about 5.5 pounds lighter.” So if you want to lose some weight, start walking, cycling or taking the bus to move around.
And just for the non-believers, here are the conclusions of the study :
This study suggests that the incorporation of greater levels of physical activity into the daily commute independently predicts lower bodyweight and healthier body composition for both men and women.
Effect sizes and significance levels were similar for both active modes (walking and cycling) and public transport. The promotion and facilitation of greater use of public transportation, in addition to walking and cycling, should therefore be considered.
Given that most commuters in the UK use private transport as their main mode, there are potentially large population-level health gains to be made by shifting to more active modes of travel.
The use of public transport and walking and cycling in the journey to and from work should be considered as part of strategies to reduce the burden of obesity and related health conditions.
Read out more in the Telegraph.
Image credits : Flickr.