Walk 30 Minutes a Day to Increase InterGroup Trust and Improve Everyone's Health
April 24, 2015
Intergroup trust can be increased when people in any setting work together in a clearly collaborative way toward the achievement of a common goal. To create intergroup peace in our communities, we need people in each of our communities to be working together in intentional ways toward common goals that unite us and give us better lives.
We need to carefully select areas where we can make life better for everyone by working together and then we need to work together in those areas to make life better in those ways.
Healthy eating and active living are both areas where we can do work together in communities to create better and healthier environments that make life better for all of us. We all want to be healthy, and we know from rich veins of scientific evidence that healthy eating can help improve health. So we need to work together in very intentional ways in every community to help people eat healthier foods.
We can do very practical things to make that happen.
We can work together to create easier access to better food. We can work together to collectively support farmers markets and healthy eating opportunities in every setting. We also need to encourage the food stores in every neighborhood to have healthy foods.
We need to teach our children the benefits of healthy eating and we need to make healthy foods available to children in every setting. One of the very best ways of succeeding in any public health strategy is to Make The Right Thing Easy To Do. That approach works for many areas of health It definitely works for healthy eating.
Making the right thing easy to do also works on improving levels of activity. Activity is actually as important to good health as healthy eating.
We also need people to be active -- and we need to make being active both safe and easy to do.
Most people do not know the huge health benefits that can result from basic physical activity. Our bodies were designed to be active, and are much healthier when we move them every day. Basic motion is a huge tool for good health.
Inactivity is poison Our bodies do not function well at multiple levels when we are inactive or inert. We need to fiercely avoid being inert. We need to be very sure that we are active to some degree every day.
We don't need to run or swim or ride bikes to benefit from being active. Basic walking works. Walking is amazingly valuable. In fact, basic walking works miracles for people at almost unbelievable levels.
People who walk 30 minutes a day every day can cut the rate of diabetes in half. That same 30 minutes of walking can cut prostate cancer, breast cancer, and colon cancer by almost half. Breast cancer patients who walk half an hour a day during and after treatment cut their mortality rate by more than 40 percent. To view the video, The Gift of Walking, please click here.
People at genetic high risk of Alzheimer’s can cut brain deterioration by more than half by walking that same half hour. Walking has massive benefits for peoples' health for an amazing range of medical conditions.
We need people in every community to support walking for everyone and we need people to support walking for the common good. We need everyone to walk. To make that possible, we all need to support each other in making walking safe and easy.
Creating those environments that support and enable walking should be a top agenda for us all. There is no single thing we can do that can have a better impact on our collective health than getting everyone to walk. We need to work together in every setting to create safe walking places for all of us.
Doing that work together as a community team involving people from all groups in each setting can give people an important thing to do together that can help bring us together in the interest of intergroup Peace as well as the interest of our individual and collective health. Making that improvement for our lives happen together can create both intergroup trust and health.
We owe it to all of us to do that work together and do it now. More than 60 percent of the health care costs in America come from our chronic conditions. People are damaged badly by those conditions. Those conditions are caused by our behaviors ... and being inert can create even greater health risks than being inert.
Walking half an hour a day every day can cut our chronic conditions in half all by itself. Healthy eating can cut those chronic conditions even more.
Low income Americans have lives ruined in disproportionate numbers by those chronic conditions that we now know how to prevent. The book Ending Racial, Ethnic and Cultural Disparities in American Health Care explains both those opportunities and those challenges.
Knowledge is power. Lets use that power to create health. Lets work together as teams in every setting to create successful outcomes and to give ourselves the mutual reinforcement and levels of interpersonal and intergroup trust that can result from doing things in each setting as teams.
Another major area where we can work together as teams to create both trust and better outcomes for significant numbers of people relate to helping all of our children improve their brain strength in the first years of life when the maximum possible impact is possible.
The book Three Key Years explains that science and that opportunity. It is available free of charge on The Institute for InterGroup Understanding website.