Have you ever wondered how you can reduce your risk to cancer or heart disease? Live longer? Well, scientists have a simple solution for you – cycle to work.
One of the largest health sector researches involved investigating the link between the two wheels and risk to cancer and heart disease.
The study took 5 years to completion and observed 250,000 UK commuters which indicated that you are set to benefit more from walking as opposed to sitting in the vehicle.
Unlike attending gym sessions, cycling didn’t require willpower the moment it became part of an individual’s routine, said the team in Glasgow.
The study made a comparison between people who actively commuted to those who were mostly stationery.
More Deaths in a single study
Generally, of all the 5,000 studied, 2,430 died, 3,748 were diagnosed with cancer while 1,110 suffered from heart problems.
But throughout the study period, regularly cycling was found to have reduced the risk of death by 41 percent, risk to cancer by 45 percent and heart disease by 46 percent.
Averagely, the cyclists covered 30 miles per week but the longer they cycled the more they benefited health-wise.
Walking was also helpful in cutting the risks to these diseases but cycling was more beneficial.
“This is really clear evidence that people who commute in an active way, particularly by cycling, were at lower risk,” said Dr Jason Gill, from the University of Glasgow.
He added that majority of people are bound to get to their work places on a daily basis. Thus, adding cycling to this unavoidable routine will be the best approach since it needs less willpower to catch up.
“What we really need to do is change our infrastructure to make it easier to cycle – we need bike lanes, to make it easier to put bikes on trains, showers at work.”
Combining cycling and public means of transport was also found to benefit most people.
No cause and effect but supported by many journals
Considering the nature of the study, determining the cause and effect is difficult but the results are supported by many other studies.
Cycling proved to have reduced risk to cancer and heart disease despite the presence of other risk factors such as smoking, diet or how heavy people are.
In simpler terms, the reduction to cancer risks cannot be broken down to loss of weight as a result of cycling.
Many experts suggest cycling to be far much better than walking because it takes longer distance and is more intense.