Prospective cohort studies have shown that people with a larger amount of physical activity (PA) and exercise have lower risks of non-communicable diseases (NCDs). In Japan, the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare published in March 2013 the “Active-Guide,” i.e. the Japanese official PA guidelines for health promotion. In this document, the most important message is “+10,” standing for “add 10 min of MVPA per day.” The establishment of the “+10” recommendation is supported by strong scientific evidence. Firstly, a meta-analysis including 26 cohort studies indicated that an increment of 10 min of moderate-to-vigorous PA per day can result in a 3.2% reduction of the average relative risk of NCDs, dementia, joint-musculoskeletal impairment, and mortality. Secondly, the National Health and Nutrition Survey (Japan, 2010) reported that 60.8% of the Japanese population is inclined to add the equivalent of 10 min of PA in their daily life. In line with these results, the “+10” recommendation is viewed as feasible and efficient for the Japanese population. To our knowledge, this implementation of an additional low-dose PA recommendation in a governmental health promotion policy is a world first. We hope that the Japanese PA policy will inspire other national and international public health agencies.
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