Dubai Health Authority organizes 'Exercise is medicine' symposium in conjunction with American College of Sports Medicine
- United Arab Emirates: Sunday, December 23 - 2012 at 14:57
- PRESS RELEASE
The Dubai Health Authority recently organized, 'Exercise is medicine' symposium in cooperation with the American College of Sports Medicine.
The symposium highlighted that physical inactivity has become a fast-growing public health problem and contributes to developing many chronic diseases and health complications including obesity, diabetes and cancer.
Exercise is Medicine 'EIM' Initiative was launched by the American College of Sports Medicine and the American Medical Association with the support of many other prestigious organizations in 2008.
Laila Al Jassmi, CEO of Health Policy and Strategy Sector at the DHA said during the opening speech of the symposium: "Reducing the incidence of diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, cancer and underlying risk factors such as tobacco consumption, unhealthy diet and inadequate physical activity is a high strategic priority. Adding to that progress in this area requires a mix of intervention strategies including risk factor prevention, early case detection and effective treatment as well as the development of advanced systems for disease surveillance and monitoring."
Al Jassmi said that evidence is more pronounced to prove that physical activity is highly important, and this evidence is more convincing than ever. People of all ages who are generally inactive can improve their health and well-being by becoming active at a moderate-intensity physical activity on a regular basis.
She said: "The Dubai Health Survey, conducted by us showed that only 19% of the population in Dubai gets sufficient exercise to remain healthy. We need to encourage the community to undertake regular exercise. Physical activity need not be strenuous to be beneficial; people of all ages benefit from participating in regular, moderate-intensity physical activity, such as 30 minutes of brisk walking five or more times a week."
Dr Fathia Al Mazmi, Head of Health Promotion Section in Health Policy and Strategy Sector said during her speech at the symposium: "There is strong evidence that regular physical activity substantially reduces the mortality rate due to coronary heart disease, the nation's leading cause of death. It decreases the risk for stroke, colon cancer, diabetes, and high blood pressure. So, let us make physical activity part of disease prevention & treatment medical paradigm, address that in our healthcare settings, include physical activity in the teaching curriculum for medical students and increase public awareness about it."
She said that lack of physical activity is now recognized as a major challenge for public health due to the direct link between lack of exercise and developing several chronic diseases and consequent premature mortality.
"Heightened fitness levels and increase in exercise/physical activity is a known factor that helps in disease prevention, health maintenance, psychological well-being, and longevity, It is clear that physical activity is a viable and relatively inexpensive way to combat most of the nations most serious diseases that are, for the most part, preventable. So exercise returns to the medical arena."
Dr. Adrian Hanbar, vice president of the American College of Sports Medicine entrepreneurs scientific, said that "We are pleased to have this symposium in Dubai which aims to ensure decision makers and legislators recognize the need to take into consideration physical activity as a means to prevent and to regulate diabetes caused by obesity and lifestyle with low physical activity".
Dr Muhammad Wasif Alam, director of Public Health and Safety at the DHA said: "The objectives of EIM are to make physical activity and exercise a standard part of disease prevention and treatment medical paradigm in the UAE."
Dr Alam added that for physical activity should to considered by all health care providers as a important part of discussion during every patient visit, and patients should be effectively counseled with regard to their physical activity and health needs, thus leading to overall improvement in the public's health and long-term reduction in health care cost.
The symposium hosted international speakers including Dr. Adrian Hutber the Vice President of the American College of Sports Medicine, Clinton A. Brawner from Henry Ford Hospital -Detroit, Michigan, USA, Dr. Hydar Demirel MD School of sports sciences and technology University of Hacettepe, Ankara, Turkey and Dr. Sofyan Maghaydah from Jordan University.
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