Just 11 minutes of movement could cut the chances of dying early

Man walking dog in park

Just 11 minutes of movement could cut the chances of dying early

Sarra Gray

By Sarra Gray

Published: 17/08/2023

- 09:38

Updated: 17/08/2023

- 15:59

Lots of simple daily activities can contribute to longevity, one study showed

Simple tasks such as doing housework, playing with your children or walking briskly can reduce the risk of dying early, according to one study.

Eleven minutes of such moderate physical activity could lower overall mortality and reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke and various cancers.

The research, published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, analysed data from around 200 studies of participants who self-reported their activity.

It found 75 minutes of moderate activity a week - or around 11 minutes a day - was enough to lower the risk of various illnesses.

Man gardening

Cleaning and gardening with energy could be enough to get results


The activity can be anything that raises the heart rate, according to the study, so putting more energy into housework or even gardening could contribute towards results.

Author of the analysis and a public health lecturer at Queen’s University Belfast Leandro Garcia added: "Many people think that to get moderate levels of physical activity, or to meet these recommended levels, they need to go to structured sessions of exercise or really do extra-strenuous activities, when in reality, activities that we do in our routines could also be very beneficial."

Another recent study showed similar results when around 25,000 people who claimed to be "non-exercisers" wore trackers as they went about their daily lives.

The research was carried out by the University of Sydney’s Charles Perkins Centre and published in Nature Medicine.

It aimed to track vigorous intermittent lifestyle physical activity (VILPA), which includes movement during many day-to-day tasks.

Just three or four one minute spells of this type of activity showed great results in this study. This amount of activity showed a reduction in all-cause and cancer mortality by up to 40 per cent.

The results were even great for preventing early death related to cardiovascual disease, with a 49 per cent reduction in death related to this.

This increased to a 65 per cent reduction in cardiovascular death risk and 49 per cent reduction in cancer-related death risk if carrying out 11 spells of VILPA a day.

Man and child walking in park

A brisk walk can get the heart rate up


The results are compared to those who take part in VILPA altogether.

Doing daily activities with "more energy" would be enough to notice results, claimed professor of physical activity, lifestyle and population health at the University of Sydney's Charles Perkins Centre and lead author, Emmanuel Stamatakis.

He said: "Upping the intensity of daily activities requires no time commitment, no preparation, no club memberships, no special skills.

"It simply involves stepping up the pace while walking or doing the housework with a bit more energy."

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