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Adults should be exercising 150 minutes a week, doctor says

By Lori Prichard | Posted - Jun 20th, 2013 @ 10:04pm

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SALT LAKE CITY — Everyone wants to know the secret to maintaining a healthy weight and doctors and researchers spend thousands of hours and millions of dollars each year trying to unlock the answer.

"What we're looking for people is to move well and eat well," said Dr. Tamara Sheffield, Intermountain Healthcare medical director. "And in order to move well, we want them to actually move more, sit less, and part of it is sleeping more."

So about how much moving, is enough moving about?

"For optimal cardiovascular health, avoiding other chronic diseases such as diabetes, 150 minutes for adults and at least an hour for kids is really critical," Sheffield said.

The 150 minutes a week of moderate exercise can include activities such as 30 minutes of brisk walking, five days a week. And an hour a day for kids should be no problem during the summer.

"Many schools incorporate physical activities into the day, as well as kids can walk to and from school, so sometimes it's a challenge in the summer time to keep kids active."

Sheffield says to make sure your kids don't sit for long periods of time in front of the television or a computer screen because it's critical for their physical health to be up and moving.

For many adults, screen time is a major requirement of our professional lives but adults should try to get up and move around every 30 minutes to an hour.

"Their blood sugar goes down, their insulin level goes down," Sheffield said. "These are things that actually lead people towards pre-diabetes and diabetes."

Perhaps the most appealing part of these recommendations is to sleep more.

"People who get less sleep actually have a lot more problems with chronic disease, anxiety, depression, weight concerns," she said. "With children that don't get enough sleep, that does affect their weight."

Lori Prichard

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