Taking public transit boasts health benefits along levels of other active methods of commuting such as walking or cycling, new research suggests.
Commuters who take public transportation, walk or bike to work tend to have lower BMIs and body fat ratios than those who drive their own cars, according to a new study by the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and University College London.
Research showed that the number of people taking active modes of transportation to work has decreased as well as data to suggest that areas which have bigger declines in active travel have increased obesity rates.
Of the participants surveyed, 76% of men and 72% of women said they commuted to work via private transportation, such as a car. When it came to using active modes of transportation, 10% of men and 11% of women said they used public transportation; 14% of men and 17% of women either walked or rode a bike to work.
For the men who walked/biked to work or took public transportation, they had a BMI score between 0.9 and 1.1 points lower than the men who drove a private car. For women, BMI scores were also lower for active commuters by between 0.7 and 0.9 points compared to the women who drove.
Along with weight loss, other benefits have been shown for active commuters including being less likely to have high blood pressure and diabetes.
Source: The BMJ