Monday, January 12, 2009

Diet More Important Than Exercise Against Obesity

Exercise is something that almost everyone had heard the benefits of. Everything from heart conditions to depression is said to be alleviated a little bit by regular physical activity. So it comes as no surprise that when hearing advise on how to fight obesity, people would often be told that they need to exercise more regularly. However, it may not be as much of a cure-all for obesity as some would paint it out to be. While improving someone's nutritional intake and exercise has been one of the hallmark prescriptions for reducing weight, new studies suggest that what a person eats may be the critical factor.

For example, researchers had found that the slimmer Nigerian women were more physically active, but surprisingly, there appeared to be no significant difference between the two groups when it came down to how much was burned during exercise. It was found that, while people could burn more calories by regularly exercising, they have a tendency to compensate by eating more food. Or in some cases, eating the wrong type of food. The data revealed that diet seemed to be a more likely reason for one group weighing less than another despite the same levels of physical exertion. In one study conducted between Nigerian and Chicago women, both groups had the same amount of physical exertion, but the Nigerian women weighed less and had lower risk of obesity. The only fundamental difference was in their diet, with the Nigerian women having high fiber and carbohydrates, and consumed low amounts of fat and animal protein.

Still, the researchers believe that more studies into the matter need to be conducted, as the data contradicts numerous previous studies. One example was found within the Old Order Amish, who were found to have a genetic mutation that increased their risk of obesity. However, they had managed to stay thin and avoid becoming obese due to engaging in a lot of physical activity.

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