Engaging in regular physical activity is one of the best ways to improve overall health. Although there are some risks associated with activity, they are far outweighed by the long-term health benefits. Physical activity can prolong life; improve quality of life; and lower the risk of heart disease, stroke, diabetes, colon cancer, breast cancer, and osteoporosis. It is also an important component of weight management. What remains a challenge is the successful promotion of regular physical activity in a population that is predominantly sedentary. The public health experience with tobacco points to the need for multifaceted approaches that include strategies aimed at both individual behavior change and environmental change.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationInternational Encyclopedia of Public Health
PublisherElsevier Inc.
Number of pages10
ISBN (Electronic)9780128037089
ISBN (Print)9780128036785
StatePublished - Oct 6 2016


  • Breast cancer
  • Cancer
  • Colon cancer
  • Diabetes
  • Exercise
  • Health promotion
  • Heart disease
  • Mental health
  • Obesity
  • Osteoporosis
  • Physical activity
  • Prevention
  • Risk reduction
  • Sedentary
  • Stroke
  • Walking


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