Navigation Links
Physical activity may not be key to obesity epidemic
Date:1/6/2009

MAYWOOD, Ill. -- A recent international study fails to support the common belief that the number of calories burned in physical activity is a key factor in rising rates of obesity.

Researchers from Loyola University Health System and other centers compared African American women in metropolitan Chicago with women in rural Nigeria. On average, the Chicago women weighed 184 pounds and the Nigerian women weighed 127 pounds.

Researchers had expected to find that the slimmer Nigerian women would be more physically active. To their surprise, they found no significant difference between the two groups in the amount of calories burned during physical activity.

"Decreased physical activity may not be the primary driver of the obesity epidemic," said Loyola nutritionist Amy Luke, Ph.D., corresponding author of the study in the September 2008 issue of the journal Obesity. Luke is an associate professor in the Department of Preventive Medicine and Epidemiology at Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine.

Physical activity is defined as anything that gets your body moving. U.S. government guidelines say that each week, adults need at least 2 hours of moderate aerobic activity (such as brisk walking) or 75 minutes of vigorous activity (such as jogging). Adults also should do muscle-strengthening activities, such as weight-lifting or sit-ups, at least twice a week.

Physical activity has many proven benefits. It strengthens bones and muscles, improves mental health and mood, lowers blood pressure, improves cholesterol levels and reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, breast cancer and colon cancer.

But Loyola research suggests that weight control might not be among the main benefits. People burn more calories when they exercise. But they compensate by eating more, said Richard Cooper, Ph.D., co-author of the study and chairman of the Department of Preventive Medicine and Epidemiology.

"We would love to say that physical activity has a positive effect on weight control, but that does not appear to be the case," Cooper said.

The recent study included 149 women from two rural Nigerian villages and 172 African American women from the west side of Chicago and suburban Maywood.

Adjusted for body size, the Chicago women burned an average of 760 calories per day in physical activity, while the Nigerian women burned 800 calories. This difference was not statistically significant.

Diet is a more likely explanation than physical activity expenditure for why Chicago women weigh more than Nigerian women, Luke said. She noted the Nigerian diet is high in fiber and carbohydrates and low in fat and animal protein. By contrast, the Chicago diet is 40 percent to 45 percent fat and high in processed foods.

Results of the new study are similar to those of a 2007 study of men and women in Jamaica. Researchers from Loyola and other centers found there was no association between weight gain and calories burned during physical activity.

"Evidence is beginning to accumulate that dietary intake may be more important than energy expenditure level," Luke said. "Weight loss is not likely to happen without dietary restraint."


'/>"/>

Contact: Jim Ritter
jritter@lumc.edu
708-216-2445
Loyola University Health System
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Severely restricted diet linked to physical fitness into old age
2. Media highlights in the November issues of Biophysical Journal
3. Roger Kornberg to present lecture at the Joint Biophysical Society/IUPAB Meeting
4. Media highlights in the Dec. 15 issue of Biophysical Journal
5. Biophysical Society announces 2008 International Travel Awards
6. Biophysical Society announces winners of 2008 Student Travel Awards
7. Biophysical Society announces winners of 2008 Minority Travel Awards
8. Biophysical Society to host discussions on the teaching of evolution and on the energy crisis
9. Biophysical Society announces new and notable symposium speakers
10. Media highlights in the January issues of Biophysical Journal
11. Genes and environment interact in first graders to predict physical but not social aggression
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:4/13/2017)... 2017 UBM,s Advanced Design and Manufacturing event ... emerging and evolving technology through its 3D Printing and ... alongside the expo portion of the event and feature ... focused on trending topics within 3D printing and smart ... event will take place June 13-15, 2017 at the Jacob ...
(Date:4/11/2017)... NXT-ID, Inc. (NASDAQ:   NXTD ) ("NXT-ID" or ... independent Directors Mr. Robin D. Richards and Mr. ... the company,s corporate governance and expertise. ... Gino Pereira , Chief Executive Officer said," ... and benefiting from their considerable expertise as we move forward ...
(Date:4/4/2017)... 4, 2017   EyeLock LLC , a leader ... United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has issued ... linking of an iris image with a face image ... the company,s 45 th issued patent. ... timely given the multi-modal biometric capabilities that have recently ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:9/25/2017)... ... September 25, 2017 , ... ... presenting multiple case studies, presentations and demonstrations at SCDM 2017, held September ... managers, medical review teams and CRO partners for more automated capabilities across ...
(Date:9/22/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... September 22, 2017 , ... ... colleague Dr. Justin Zalewsky in offering LANAP® and LAPIP™ laser treatments. Drs. Hoge ... True Regeneration™ to patients, a minimally invasive and less painful option that produces ...
(Date:9/21/2017)... MD (PRWEB) , ... September 21, 2017 , ... ... its HQ office, which includes executive, engineering and manufacturing functions to The LaunchPort™ ... operation The Factory™, provide a full range of manufacturing and business services to ...
(Date:9/21/2017)... , ... September 21, 2017 , ... ... client portal. Each relaunch of the portal includes new features that facilitate streamlined ... device companies seek to remain at the forefront of medical advancements, they rely ...
Breaking Biology Technology: