Monday , June 27 2022

Is it ethical not to prescribe exercise in current medicine?


per Javier Butragueño, coordinator of the SEEDO Obesity and Exercise Working Group.

Jiddu Krishnamurti (American writer and philosopher) said so it is not a sign of good health to be well adapted to a deeply ill society. We are talking about a society that is affected by high levels of stress that sleeps poorly and poorly, that leads a sedentary and inactive lifestyle, that has increased its energy intake in the last 40 years and that has its disposition large amounts of food without moving. In addition, we live in environments and cities with high degrees of pollution, both noise and pollution. These variables may have influenced the data from the ENPE study, where 39.3% of the Spanish population is overweight and 21.6% are obese. A chronic multifactorial disease, with an epidemic trend and which has become one of the great health challenges of recent years.

Despite dramatic advances in pharmacological and intervention treatments in different diseases (including obesity), data continue to advance and overweight-related diseases continue to rise. For that, we wonder if it is ethical not to prescribe the treatment that has been shown to be most relevant in people’s quality of life, and in improving the physical condition that prevents all these factors: exercise and changes in daily physical activity.

There is clear scientific evidence to prove it the benefit of regular physical activity in the primary and secondary prevention of diabetes, hypertension, cancer (especially breast and colon cancer), depression, osteoporosis, and dementia. Likewise, it has been confirmed that regular exercise and physical activity is essential to achieve and maintain weight control. However, today, graduates / graduates in Physical Activity and Sports Sciences still do not belong to the so-called “health professionals”.

With all the knowledge generated in recent years from different research groups, we wonder why today’s medicine has not declared a total war against physical inactivity? If we had a pill that conferred all the health benefits confirmed by exercise, wouldn’t we do everything humanly possible to make sure everyone had access to this wonderful drug? Wouldn’t it be the most prescribed pill in human history? Possibly we all know the answer, but the SEEDO exercise working group has shown the evidence and ways to act in the I Online Conference of the Spanish Society for the Study of Obesity (SEEDO) on Exercise and Health in people with obesity.

Among many conclusions, it has been highlighted that the greater the physical activity, the lower the risk of disease; all exercise intensities count; if we manage to reduce physical inactivity by 10%, we could reduce deaths by 500,000 deaths a year; the new guidelines recommend at least 150 to 300 minutes of moderate to vigorous aerobic activity per week for all adults and an average of 60 minutes per day for children and adolescents; obesity increases the risk of asthma by up to 95% and a 5% -10% reduction in fatty weight promotes asthma control; well-managed professional line training can help remove the main barriers to playing sports; being overweight increases your risk of getting certain types of cancer, as well as the risk of the cancer coming back after treatment. Undoubtedly, a lot of evidence and arguments that justify the determined commitment to the practice of physical exercise.

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