Lack of exercise is twice as deadly as obesity

Lack of exercise is twice as deadly as obesity

Do you spend more fretting about your weight than exercising at the gym? Shift the balance more towards getting active and you can probably forget about those scales.

We've already looked at exercise being the miracle medicine. No surprise then that a lack of exercise has the exact opposite effect.

According to a new study from Cambridge University, inactivity causes many more health problems than obesity. It seems it’s much better to be fat and fit, than thin and inactive. 

Why is inactivity so bad?

When we’re active, our largest muscles produce many beneficial molecules. These include enzymes which clean out noxious fats from the bloodstream. And remember we reap these benefits whatever we weigh.  

But when we’re sedentary it’s like the light has gone out in these muscles. Our bodies are much less effective at removing fats and good cholesterol levels can drop.  This increases the risk of many serious health conditions such as heart disease, cancer,  Alzheimer’s, diabetes, osteoporosis, and of course increases the risk of obesity.

Boost your activity

It’s abundantly clear that we need to get active, not just stand on the scales each morning and choose the low-cal options at Starbucks. But while you can’t simply exercise away the harmful effects of being too sedentary, you can certainly help redress the balance:

  • Walk around for a minute at least twice an hour to keep those large muscles switched on.
  • Aim for at least 20 minutes of exercise a day. Current NHS guidelines recommend adults do at least 2 ½ hours of moderate aerobic exercise per week, plus muscle-conditioning exercises at least twice a week. 
  • Do whatever gets you moving. Try fitness gadgets, use cheap gym passes, train for a challenge or just simply walk. Aim for variety and enjoyment. 

It’s a simple message. Make exercise, not calories,  your number one health priority.  That’s probably the best ever fitness resolution for 2015.   


The Author

Kath Webb

Kath is a contributing writer for PayasUgym. Football, running, weight training, yoga and walking are her forte, along with cooking tasty, nutritious food - with a regular batch of cake chucked in.

Comments

Matthew C.
17 February 2015

Matthew C.

I must have missed this news so this is great to know. I don;t care if I'm skinny or flabbier, I just know I feel better when I workout, and that's the main point of it for me, not weight. Hopefully this research will shift the emphasis away from obsessive weighing and over to just enjoying being active.

Sasha B.
12 February 2015

Sasha B.

I'm so glad to hear this confirmed by studies. I always ate a lot, am not skinny, but still feel so healthy. Lets simply keep active and enjoy our food !!

Olivia C.
10 February 2015

Olivia C.

Too much emphasis is given to size, when it's about how much we keep fit that really matters. Don't be a couch potato!

Mike D.
9 February 2015

Mike D.

My friend's parents are in their 70s. The mum is overweight but walks regularly and eats healthily. The dad is skinny but doesn't eat very well, isn't active and is prone to stress. They had their cholesterol measured and the mum was much lower than the dad's. And she's just happier too. The message is clear to me - don't fuss over weight so much!!

Roger B.
8 February 2015

Roger B.

excellent - much easier to get moving than to worry about every calorie! As for the kids; a 'no parking zone' extending half a mile round every school would do it, with exceptions only for the disabled.

Pete R.
8 February 2015

Pete R.

It's obvious this. Sitting around on our bums was never going to help the health crisis. Kids need to be educated to get out and stay active.

Emma C.
8 February 2015

Emma C.

That's so true Olga. In my son's primary school they only have PE once a week. Unbelievable! I think the teachers are so concerned about meeting the stats for literacy and maths they don't care about much else.

Olga N.
6 February 2015

Olga N.

This is something they should be telling them in school - the important of PE lessons has never improved - when I was at school it was seen as a joke except by the very fit and sporty and I'm sure it's the same today. If PE was more important then exercise would be viewed as more of a habit for everybody than something you can pick or choose.

Would you like to post a comment? Please register or log in.

Log In Register

Share this

Subscribe

Popular Posts

By continuing to use our site, you are agreeing to the use of cookies. You can change this and find out more by following this link.