More Activity, Less Sitting Needed to Cut Obesity Risk

More Activity, Less Sitting Needed to Cut Obesity Risk
More Activity, Less Sitting Needed to Cut Obesity Risk

(HealthDay News) — Both high levels of physical activity and low levels of leisure time sitting may be necessary to reduce the risk of obesity, according to research published online July 31 in Diabetologia.

Joshua A. Bell, of University College London, and colleagues assessed the effects of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity and leisure time sitting on risk of obesity and clustering of two or more of five metabolic risk factors (low high-density lipoprotein cholesterol level, high triacylglycerol level, hypertension, hyperglycemia, and insulin resistance) for 3,670 participants (73% male; mean age, 56 years).

The researchers found that physical activity, but not leisure time sitting, was associated with incident obesity. At five years of follow-up, individuals reporting both high levels of physical activity and low levels of leisure time sitting had the lowest risk of incident obesity (odds ratio, 0.26; 95% confidence interval, 0.11–0.64), with weaker effects after 10 years. At five years, individuals with intermediate levels of both physical activity and leisure time sitting, compared with those with low levels of physical activity and high levels of leisure time sitting, had lower risk of incident clustering of metabolic risk factors (odds ratio, 0.53; 95% confidence interval, 0.36–0.78), with similar odds after 10 years.

"Both high levels of physical activity and low levels of leisure time sitting may be required to substantially reduce the risk of obesity," the authors write.

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