Consensus physical activity guidelines for Asian Indians

Diabetes Technol Ther. 2012 Jan;14(1):83-98. doi: 10.1089/dia.2011.0111. Epub 2011 Oct 11.


India is currently undergoing rapid economic, demographic, and lifestyle transformations. A key feature of the latter transformation has been inappropriate and inadequate diets and decreases in physical activity. Data from various parts of India have shown a steady increase in the prevalence of lifestyle-related diseases such as type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM), the metabolic syndrome, hypertension, coronary heart disease (CHD), etc., frequently in association with overweight or obesity. Comparative data show that Asian Indians are more sedentary than white Caucasians. In this review, the Consensus Group considered the available physical activity guidelines from international and Indian studies and formulated India-specific guidelines. A total of 60 min of physical activity is recommended every day for healthy Asian Indians in view of the high predisposition to develop T2DM and CHD. This should include at least 30 min of moderate-intensity aerobic activity, 15 min of work-related activity, and 15 min of muscle-strengthening exercises. For children, moderate-intensity physical activity for 60 min daily should be in the form of sport and physical activity. This consensus statement also includes physical activity guidelines for pregnant women, the elderly, and those suffering from obesity, T2DM, CHD, etc. Proper application of guidelines is likely to have a significant impact on the prevalence and management of obesity, the metabolic syndrome, T2DM, and CHD in Asian Indians.

Publication types

  • Consensus Development Conference
  • Practice Guideline
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Consensus*
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / epidemiology*
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / ethnology
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / prevention & control*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • India / epidemiology
  • Male
  • Motor Activity*
  • Obesity / epidemiology*
  • Obesity / ethnology
  • Obesity / prevention & control*
  • Prevalence
  • Risk Reduction Behavior