The International Olympic Committee announced recently that it would strengthen its partnership with the World Health Organization, helping it accomplish its stated goal of increasing access to sports around the world.
The IOC says that its central objective with this outreach effort is to promote healthy, active lifestyles among young people worldwide, by providing them with the opportunity to participate in sporting activities. This can help to forestall the onset of many health problems caused by prolonged inactivity, including obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular issues.
World Health Organization director-general Margaret Chan said that “this agreement with the International Olympic Committee will help increase our ability and reach in addressing the diseases which are the leading causes of death around the world. Tackling these diseases is one of the major challenges for sustainable development in the 21st century.”
Public health experts say that obesity and associated illnesses are reaching epidemic proportions in parts of the developed world, particularly in the U.S. Beyond the numerous health issues that a sedentary lifestyle can cause, obesity sufferers could find themselves paying more for life insurance when they try to protect their families against any unexpected tragedy.