Friday

December 7, 2007

By Rosanne Prinsen, MSc, Alberta Centre for Active Living

GENERAL PHYSICAL ACTIVITY

Small Step
http://www.smallstep.gov/index.html

“SmallStep.gov has recently been redesigned to better suit your needs. Re-launched this fall, the Web site includes updated information on health tips, eating better, ways to get active and portion control. SmallStep.gov can also provide a range of informational resources to assist you in achieving your health goals.”

Check out the “Get the Facts” section and link to Small Steps’ activity tracker.

Workbook for Influencing Physical Activity Policy – Now
http://www.ophea.net/parc/policy.cfm
The PARC Workbook for Influencing Physical Activity Policy is for anyone venturing to create a physical activity policy in their community, school or workplace.

It is suitable for all levels of experience or comfort with policy development. This workbook follows the Health Communication Unit’s (THCU) eight-step policy development model.

Although policy development is often resource intensive, this systematic approach can make it easier and the long-term benefits of policy make it a worthwhile investment.

NUTRITION

Obesity and Genetics: What We Know, What We Don’t Know and What It Means
http://www.cdc.gov/genomics/training
perspectives/files/obesknow.htm


“Rising rates of obesity seem to be a consequence of modern life, with access to large amounts of palatable, high calorie food and limited need for physical activity. However, this environment of plenty affects different people in different ways.

Some are able to maintain a reasonable balance between energy input and energy expenditure. Others have a chronic imbalance that favors energy input, which expresses itself as overweight and obesity. What accounts for these differences between individuals?”

WALKING/PEDOMETERS

Using Pedometers to Increase Physical Activity and Improve Health: A Systematic Review
http://jama.ama-assn.org/cgi/content/
short/298/19/2296

Bravata D.M., Smith-Spangler C., Sundaram V., Gienger A.L., Lin N., Lewis R., Stave C.D., Olkin I., & Sirard J.R. (2007). Using pedometers to increase physical activity and improve health: A systematic review. JAMA 298 (19), 2296–2304.

Context: Without detailed evidence of their effectiveness, pedometers have recently become popular as a tool for motivating physical activity.

Objective: To evaluate the association of pedometer use with physical activity and health outcomes among outpatient adults.

Data sources: English-language articles from MEDLINE, EMBASE, Sport Discus, PsychINFO, Cochrane Library, Thompson Scientific (formerly known as Thompson ISI), and ERIC (1966-2007); bibliographies of retrieved articles; and conference proceedings.

Study Selection: Studies were eligible for inclusion if they reported an assessment of pedometer use among adult outpatients, reported a change in steps per day, and included more than five participants.

Conclusions: The results suggest that the use of a pedometer is associated with significant increases in physical activity and significant decreases in body mass index and blood pressure. Whether these changes are durable over the long term is undetermined.

Walk and Bike for Life
http://www.walkandbikeforlife.org/

Walk & Bike for Life is a non-profit organization dedicated to create awareness of the benefits of walking and cycling as activities.

The organization also promotes urban parks and trails as great places, as they improve our environment, advance economic development, enhance our transportation systems, raise the recreation levels for all and improve our personal and public health.

WOMEN

Active & Free: Young Women, Physical Activity and Tobacco
http://www.caaws.ca/activeandfree/e/index.cfm

This resource is for leaders who care about young women’s health. English and French versions of the resource are available free of charge in a downloadable PDF from the CAAWS website.

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