Men are more active than women - study
According to a study on health care issues in Jamaica that polled 1,200 residents, 77 per cent of men aged 18 to 65 years and over engage in frequent physical activities, such as sports, compared to 62 per cent of women in the same age range.
In the Gleaner-commissioned Johnson Survey Research Limited study, 69.5 per cent of both men and women polled said they exercised regularly.
Dr Handel Emery, consultant cardiologist at the Heart Foundation of Jamaica, believed that interest in physical activity rather than health concerns was the primary reason for the results presented.
He told The Gleaner: "Men typically like being outdoors, doing physical things and engaging in competitive sport. I don't think it's primarily due to an interest in health. I recommend that patients engage in at least 40 minutes of moderate intensity exercise, such as brisk walking, jogging or swimming, as this is ideal from a cardiovascular risk-reduction standpoint."
In speaking to the direct link between frequent exercises and reducing non-communicable diseases, Emery added: "There is quite a lot of evidence that exercise does reduce long-term cardiovascular risks through a number of mechanisms. These include reducing the blood pressure, total cholesterol, bad cholesterol, blood sugars and an overall reduction of the rate of atherosclerosis, which is the rate at which fat and cholesterol are deposited in the wall of the artery."
Certified personal trainer Stokely Rose added that while it appears that women outnumber men at gyms and fitness centres, men engage in other regular physical activities that tend to be overlooked but were also vital.
"Physical activity and exercise don't just include gym training. They include activities like scrimmage football that men, on average, engage in a great deal more than women. Also, women tend to have more responsibility, hence less time, especially in their child-bearing years. They're the mothers of the home, the caregivers, so they sometimes sacrifice themselves for the betterment of their home and children. So, even though it might seem as if women are out there more, it is correct that men, on average, are more physically engaged than women."