Lifelong Benefits of Moving More

Families, Food and Fitness June 14, 2012 Print Friendly and PDF

Regular physical activity that is performed on most days of the week reduces the risk of developing or dying from some of the leading causes of illness and death in the United States. Regular physical activity improves health in the following ways:


Elderly woman swimming


  • Reduces the risk of dying prematurely.
  • Reduces the risk of heart disease.
  • Reduces the risk of developing diabetes.
  • Reduces the risk of developing high blood pressure.
  • Helps reduce blood pressure in people who already have high blood pressure.
  • Reduces the risk of developing colon cancer.
  • Reduces feelings of depression and anxiety.
  • Helps control weight.
  • Helps build and maintain healthy bones, muscles, and joints.
  • Helps older adults become stronger and better able to move about without falling.
  • Promotes psychological well-being.

Given the numerous health benefits of physical activity, the risks of being inactive are clear. Physical inactivity is a serious, nationwide problem. Inactivity among so many Americans has created a national burden of unnecessary illness, increased health care costs, and premature death.

A moderate amount of physical activity can be achieved in a variety of ways. People can select activities that they enjoy and that fit into their daily lives. Walking, dancing, bicycling, hiking, gardening, and washing your car are examples of physical activity.

FOR MORE INFORMATION VIEW Fit Physical Activity Into Your Day Video



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This work is supported by the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture, New Technologies for Ag Extension project.