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People Who Bike To Work Live Longer, Have 45% Lower Risk Of Cancer

A new study from researchers at the University of Glasgow found that people who cycle to work live longer having a lower risk of death from any cause. They also state that population health may be increased by policies that encourage active transportation including the building of bike lanes.

CNBC reports:

The study, published on Thursday in the BMJ, found that compared to "a non-active commute", riding a bike to work was associated with a 45 percent lower risk of cancer and a 46 percent lower risk of heart disease.

The article in StudyFinds states:

The study examined how 264,000 people — averaging about 53 years old and pulled from a British database focusing on biological information — got to work each day. The participants indicated on a questionnaire their modes of transportation — be it by car, bike, public transportation, or foot. They were also polled on their level of physical activity.

In a follow-up about five years after the study began, researchers then determined which participants had either died or were admitted to a hospital at some point during the study. They determined that the participants who commuted to work by bicycle had the lowest risk of death from any cause and lowest risk of cancer.

Of course, the researchers caution that the results are strictly observational, and that cause-and-effect can’t be concluded from this study. “The findings, if causal, suggest population health may be improved by policies that increase active commuting, particularly cycling, such as the creation of cycle lanes, cycle hire or purchase schemes, and better provision for cycles on public transport,” the study notes.

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