'Stand Up India': VLCC Launches nationwide campaign to fight obesity
Stand Up India, is a public awareness campaign that seeks to make people aware of the dangers of prolonged sitting, urging them to be more active. People who sit for 6-7 hours every day are at an increased risk of diabetes, heart disease, cancer and shorter life spans as well as becoming overweight, even if they exercise, say studies. A report published in the Annals of Internal Medicine in January 2015 finds that long hours of sitting increases an individual’s risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes and cancer.
This risk can be cut down by standing for at least one-fourth of the day, observes a research by the American Cancer Society in collaboration with The Cooper Institute, the University of Texas and the University of Georgia.
A knowledge paper “Obesity in the Indian context” by VLCC reveals that reducing sitting time and standing for an hour can help burn approximately 50 extra kilocalories. So by standing for two hours a day for a year one can lose more than 25,000 calories (that is running at least 6 marathons), or nearly three kgs.
“Prolonged sitting is equivalent to the ‘new smoking’. While all of us are concerned about our health, constantly looking out for alternatives to help us stay fit like eating healthy or working out, we ignore what is the most basic: the time we spend sitting down”, said Vandana Luthra. “I urge you to stand up for your health. Log on to www.orangepledge.com and take the Orange Pledge if you agree to ‘stand up’ against obesity.”
India’s average overweight percentage has jumped from around 14% in 1980 to around 20% today. It is an established fact that an average person spends 19 hours a day by being sedentary. This physical inaction is a threat many. If daily sitting time were reduced the beneficial effect on population health could be comparable to that achieved for reducing smoking, inactivity or overweight and obesity. A simple act of ‘standing up’ is the first step to fight obesity.
Leading companies like BHEL, HCL, Kotak Mahindra Bank and SAP India, to name a few, have also pledged to participate in the campaign by encouraging their staff to stand in a series of intra-company and inter-company competitions. Additionally, VLCC is organising a ‘Stand Up India carnival at DLF Saket mall in New Delhi to spread the word.
In the UAE, VLCC is organising a host of activities ranging from food label-reading sessions to partnering with the World Inter-School Rope Skipping event and ‘Stand Up at Skipathon’ event.