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Short Exercise Bursts Lower Cancer Risk, Sydney University Study Finds

Short Exercise Bursts Lower Cancer Risk, Sydney University Study Finds

  • Riley James
In a world where time is of the essence and many of us find it difficult to commit to a regular gym routine, a recent study led by Professor Emmanuel Stamatakis from the University of Sydney brings welcome news. The research reveals that short bursts of vigorous physical activity, referred to as "Vilpa" (Vigorous Intermittent Lifestyle Physical Activity), can significantly lower the risk of certain diseases, including cancer.

This type of exercise could be as simple as brisk walking, climbing stairs, or even vigorous housework. The beauty of Vilpa lies in its incidental nature - it's the exercise you get without consciously setting aside time for it, without needing to don your fitness health clothing, and without needing a gym membership.

It's a well-known fact that for many, finding 30 to 60 minutes a day for a dedicated workout is a challenge. This is reflected in fitness industry statistics showing that between 67 and 80 percent of gym members rarely or never use their memberships. But Vilpa offers a solution to this problem.

The study found a strong link between Vilpa and a lower risk of cancers known to be influenced by physical activity. These include lung, bowel, liver, kidney, head and neck, oesophageal, breast and endometrial cancers. The findings indicated that just four to five minutes of Vilpa each day could reduce the overall risk of these cancers by 17 to 18 percent, and the risk of those cancers specifically affected by physical activity by 31 to 32 percent.

The research followed over 22,000 UK Biobank participants who had never been diagnosed with cancer and who had never engaged in structured exercise. The participants were monitored for almost seven years using fitness trackers to record all their activity, no matter how brief or intense.

The average age of the participants was 62, an age when many people struggle to meet the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommendation of at least 150 minutes of exercise a week. However, the study suggests that starting small, with a manageable goal of around 3.5 minutes of Vilpa a day, can naturally build fitness and confidence.

It's common for people to feel self-conscious about using a gym, particularly those in their 60s. But by incorporating Vilpa into daily routines, they can gradually build their fitness levels, making the prospect of using a gym less daunting.

Typical Vilpa activities can include brisk walking, walking uphill, or carrying shopping bags for a few hundred metres. Even vigorous housework or gardening can count towards Vilpa. By increasing the intensity of these everyday activities, they can be transformed into effective exercise bursts.

To ensure you're getting the most out of your Vilpa, it's important to monitor your heart rate and pace. A brisk walk should be around 100 to 130 steps a minute, compared to a slow walk of about 60 to 80 steps. Investing in a fitness tracker or a smartwatch from a reliable source like T-shoppe online fitness store can be helpful in keeping track of your progress.

In conclusion, it's never too late to become active. Whether you're in your 60s or younger, incorporating short bursts of vigorous activity into your daily routine can have significant health benefits. So next time you're out shopping for girls clothing to lose weight or active wear for fat loss, remember that the real key to health and fitness might just be in the everyday activities you're already doing.