The health benefits of active travel was shared in a research paper published in the British Medical Journal. “Association Between Active Commuting and Incident Cardiovascular Disease, Cancer and Mortality: Prospective Cohort Study” followed 263,450 commuters who used walking, cycling or mixed-mode versus non-active (car or public transportation).
The participants were comprised of 52% women/48% men with an average age of 52.6 years old who commuted on a typical work day. Follow-ups were conducted approximately 5 years later.
- Cycling commuting was associated with a lower risk of all cause mortality and adverse cardiovascular disease (CVD) and cancer outcomes
- Walking commuting was associated with lower risk of (CVD) incidence and mortality, in a dose dependent manner and independent of a range of confounding factors
- Mixed-mode commuting including a cycle component was associated with a lower risk of all cause mortality and cancer outcomes
- Policies designed to affect a population level modal shift to more active modes of commuting, particularly by cycle (eg, cycle lanes, city bike hire, subsidized cycle purchase schemes and increasing provision for cycles on public transport) may present major opportunities for the improvement of public health