Written by 29 June, 2015 12:03 am Category Archives Articles, Health tip of the month archives, Periodic Features.

Dr. Maninder Ahuja

Chairperson, Geriatric Gynaecology Committee, FOGSI
E-mail : ahuja.maninder@gmail.com

Make your life colorful

When I was invited by Dr.Nozer Sheriar to write on health tips for our FOGSI web site I was in a dilemma. Now why that dilemma was there? I have to write for a professional organization but at the same time I have to sensitize our medical fraternity about various life style modifications, which I tell you are really loathsome, to take up practically.

How we are tackling our patients we tell them “exercise karna” (do some exercise) how many of us go beyond that?

And what about everybody’s daily routine life?

We have evolved from an era of physical activity where we did not have any tools except our own hands and feet and as we started progressing, we stopped using them less and less and with so much advanced technology what activity remains is just up to the level of moving our finger tips to various controls and we are just carrying our own body weight!

What patients and all of us want to do is “PILL POPPING” What we are working on talking on is how to cut a patient and how many pills or injections should be taken every day.


Are we not slaves of our own inventions and we are fools thinking we invented them for our own quality of life but we are moving away from that “quality of life “. So much away that coming back won’t be possible.

These problems are two folds, science of exercise developed very late. Till 1953 bed rest was panacea for all diseases starting from tuberculosis to heart disease.

So when we started thinking about exercise as a therapy and as a preventive measure?

Till  mid twentieth century role of physical activity and exercise was not well understood in medicine and it was in 1953(Fig-2) that first study was done in drivers and conductors of double Decker buses by Professor Jeremy Morris in London.


Fig – 2

Conductors who ran up and down the stairs of buses had much lower incidence of CHD mortality because of coronary artery disease as compared to drivers who sat at steering wheel whole day, and this highlighted the role of exercise in coronary artery disease. Now that was the beginning of our field of exercise science, systematic work on physical activity and health.

This was the starting point of  journey of physical fitness through exercise. After this there have been a large number of studies to highlight role of exercise and physical fitness throughout life  for prevention of metabolic syndromes and for therapeutic purposed also. There have been more and more e studies from 1980 onwards and in 2005-2006 more than 20,000 articles on physical fitness were published. (Fig-3)


From here starts our sojourn together on telling you about physical fitness exercise and their scientific basis is going to change our “QUALITY AND QUANTITY OF LIFE”

What does exercise mean?

Structured physical activity of exerting your muscles in various ways to keep fit. But how to go about this activity  is not clear not only to medical community but also for general public and whatever  knowledge is there is being utilized to train the athletes and sportspersons and not for general public health. The questions, “How much exercise is enough?” and “What type of exercise is best for developing and maintaining fitness?” are frequently asked.

Thus, the need for guidelines for exercise prescription is apparent. Based on the existing evidence concerning exercise prescription for healthy adults and the need for guidelines, the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) and other institutions have made some  recommendations for the quantity and quality of training for developing and maintaining cardio respiratory fitness, body composition, muscular strength and endurance, and flexibility in the healthy adult:

Prescription of exercise

Now exercise/physical activity is for health and fitness in the context of an exercise dose continuum. That is, there is a dose response to exercise by which benefits are derived through varying quantities of physical activity ranging from approximately 700-2000 plus kilocalories of effort per week. Many significant health benefits are achieved by going from a sedentary state to a minimal level of physical activity; programs involving higher intensities and/or greater frequency/durations provide additional benefits .But all the exercises have to be according to needs of the person so that is why we are talking about prescription of exercise.

Prescrtiption of exercise would consist of :

  • Type of exercises
  • Duration of exercises
  • Intensity of exercises
  • Change in exercise as fitness is increased

But  I have to tell you something  now, so that you are busy till next update?

Start walking, and at a moderate pace and yoga do just as a stretching exercise.

These are your warm up exercises and keep walking till I talk to you again.

Stop , Stop not till then only 40 -45 min /day if you want to lose weight and for cardio respiratory endurance 30min/day would be ok but at moderate to vigorous intensity.

So in next update prescription of exercise with regards to intensity of exercise.