Nov. 14 (UPI) -- About 80 percent of Americans don't get enough daily physical activity, causing them to ring up close to $117 billion dollars in annual healthcare costs.
To combat this costly health problem, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced on Monday it has issued new guidelines which have bumped up the recommended time for physical activity that adults and children need each week.
The new number is 150 minutes of moderate-to-vigorous aerobic activity each week, or roughly 22 minutes a day. Previous guidelines called for exercise only 10 minutes a day.
"The new guidelines demonstrate that, based on the best science, everyone can dramatically improve their health just by moving -- anytime, anywhere, and by any means that gets you active," Brett P. Giroir, assistant secretary for health at Health and Human Services, said in a press release. "That's why we need to come together as a nation to get Americans moving. When we move more, we have better cardiovascular health, we are stronger and less susceptible to disease, and we feel better. The updated guidelines include evidence-based strategies that leaders across the nation can use to help Americans fit more physical activity into their daily lives."
That's in addition to two days a week of strength training. Kids ages 6 to 17 should get at least an hour of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity each day.
The new guidelines, published this week in the Journal of the American Medical Association, come from a comprehensive scientific review reflecting recently discovered data about the immediate and long-term benefit from exercise, along with how it can help manage chronic illnesses.
The updated guidelines reflect a growing need for Americans to reverse negative health trends. Exercise can reduce anxiety and blood pressure, improve sleep quality and improve insulin sensitivity. .
Regular physical activity can also decrease pain caused by osteoarthritis, and lower the progression of hypertension and type 2 diabetes, as well as reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression.
"The American Heart Association has long recognized physical activity as a proven way to lower chances of heart disease and live a longer, healthier life. Our organization is committed to developing programs and advocating for polices that make it easier for everyone to get more physically active, regardless of where they live," said Ivor Benjamin, president of the American Heart Association, in a press release.
"In 2008, the American Heart Association adopted the Physical Activity Guidelines and again we are proud to lead the call for health groups across the country to view these guidelines as beneficial to both public health and a worthy tool for clinicians."