World Health Organization (WHO) Guidelines Explained for Adults

April 15, 2015

So, someone asked me recently if there were guidelines for being active. Well people, we do.

WHO is the health governing body of the world and they have put up guidelines for physical activity for optimal health.

I’ll start with the guidelines for adults. According to WHO, adults are aged 18-65years old. The guidelines are listed and explained below:

We should do at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic physical activity throughout the week or do at least 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity throughout the week or a combination of both.

  • This simply means that we should do at least 150 minutes of physical activity, which I have explained earlier in this blog, and 75 minutes of exercise or a combination of both which is preferable. An example? 30 minutes of leisure walking everyday for the week (210minutes of physical activity) and 10- 15 minutes of exercises such as squats, lunges, sit ups, triceps dips, yoga… whatever you enjoy. That’s what we need to do to live a long, healthy life.

Aerobic activity should be performed in bouts of at least 10 minutes duration.

  • Now, aerobic activity works on the lungs and heart. It’s also called cardio exercises. This is where dancing, running, jogging… any exercise that gets the heart pumping. We can always incorporate this into our 150minutes/ 75 minutes throughout the week.

For additional health benefits, adults should increase their moderate intensity aerobic physical activity to 300 minutes per week or engage in 150 minutes of vigorous intensity aerobic physical activity or a combination of both.

  • This is a suggestion for extra health benefits and to me, its like a prescription. We should not to do more than 300 minutes a week of physical activity and more than 150 minutes of exercise a week. So there’s a limit on exercise.

DO NOT OVER EXERCISE OR YOU WILL HURT YOURSELF.

Muscle strengthening activities should be done involving major muscle groups on 2 or more days a week.

  • As we grow older, our bodies change. They deteriorate. And that’s when we start to have back pains, arthritis and other bone health problems. Muscle strengthening exercises are needed to strengthen our muscles to keep our joints and bones in check. Therefore, it is very very very necessary that we do these exercises so that we wont spend our older years leaving in pain. As we go on, I’ll talk about various muscle strengthening exercises we can do in the comfort of our homes.

So, in order to be healthy, we need to be more active, do cardio, muscle strengthening exercises and ensure we do not do more than 300 minutes of physical activity and 150 minutes of exercise every week.

Here’s an example of an exercise plan using the guidelines given above

Physical activity Exercise
20- 25 minutes of leisure walking (daily) Aerobics: Running for 10 minutes (70 minutes a week)Muscle strengthening: Squats (legs) for 2 mins

Lunges (legs) for 2 mins

Triceps dips (arms) for 2 mins

Sit ups (abs) for 2 mins

Plank (abs, arms and back) for 30 secs

So, now we know and now we do.

Source: dharmielipede

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