Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Obesity leads to decreased physical activity over time

Date:
March 28, 2013
Source:
Brigham Young University
Summary:
Obesity leads to a decrease in physical activity over time, researchers have confirmed. The exercise science team used accelerometers to measure the actual movement and intensity of activity for 254 female participants, 124 of which were obese. Over the course of 20 months, physical activity dropped by eight percent for the group of obese individuals.

BYU researchers found that obesity leads to a decrease in physical activity over time.
Credit: Image courtesy of Brigham Young University

Physical activity and its relation to obesity has been studied for decades by researchers; however, almost no one has studied the reverse -- obesity's effect on physical activity.

Related Articles


So BYU exercise science professor Larry Tucker decided to look at the other side of the equation to determine if obesity leads to less activity. The findings, no surprise, confirmed what everyone has assumed for years.

"Most people talk about it as if it's a cycle," Tucker said, senior-author on a study appearing online ahead of print in the journal Obesity. "Half of the cycle has been studied almost without limit. This is the first study of its kind, in many ways, looking at obesity leading to decreases in physical activity over time."

To study this reciprocal effect objectively, the researchers attached an accelerometer to more than 250 participants. Accelerometers measure actual movement and intensity of activity. Previous studies have relied on less-dependable self-reported data.

"Roughly 35 percent of the population reports that they're regularly active," Tucker said. "When you actually put an accelerometer on adults and follow them for many days, only about 5 to 7 percent are actually regularly active. We used an objective measure so we could determine genuine movement, not just wishful thinking."

The 254 female participants -- 124 of which were considered obese -- were instructed to wear the accelerometer for seven consecutive days at the beginning of the study, and then again for an additional week 20 months later, at the end of the study.

On average, physical activity in obese participants dropped by 8 percent over the course of 20 months. This is equivalent to decreasing moderate to vigorous physical activity by 28 minutes per week. In contrast, non-obese women demonstrated essentially no change in the amount of physical activity they were participating in weekly.

These results weren't shocking to the researchers, who assumed this study would confirm the destructive cycle; however, it does provide more understanding into how the cycle works and how it can be stopped. It also offers additional insight into the measurement methods researchers use and how self-reporting can yield inaccurate results.

"It's not rocket science, and it's very logical," Tucker said. "It just hasn't been studied using high quality measurement methods and with a large sample size. This provides scientists with more ammunition to understand how inactivity leads to weight gain and weight gain leads to less activity. This cycle, or spiral, is probably continuous over decades of life."

Tucker is a professor and epidemiologist who has conducted many studies on obesity and its contributing factors.

Jared M. Tucker, a graduate student at the time, is the lead author on the paper. Along with Larry Tucker, exercise science professors James LeCheminant and Bruce Bailey were coauthors on the paper.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Brigham Young University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Brigham Young University. "Obesity leads to decreased physical activity over time." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 28 March 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/03/130328142404.htm>.
Brigham Young University. (2013, March 28). Obesity leads to decreased physical activity over time. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 31, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/03/130328142404.htm
Brigham Young University. "Obesity leads to decreased physical activity over time." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/03/130328142404.htm (accessed March 31, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Solitair Device Aims to Takes Guesswork out of Sun Safety

Solitair Device Aims to Takes Guesswork out of Sun Safety

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Mar. 31, 2015) — The Solitair device aims to take the confusion out of how much sunlight we should expose our skin to. Small enough to be worn as a tie or hair clip, it monitors the user&apos;s sun exposure by taking into account their skin pigment, location and schedule. Matthew Stock reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Soda, Salt and Sugar: The Next Generation of Taxes

Soda, Salt and Sugar: The Next Generation of Taxes

Washington Post (Mar. 30, 2015) — Denisa Livingston, a health advocate for the Dinι Community Advocacy Alliance, and the Post&apos;s Abby Phillip discuss efforts around the country to make unhealthy food choices hurt your wallet as much as your waistline. Video provided by Washington Post
Powered by NewsLook.com
UnitedHealth Buys Catamaran

UnitedHealth Buys Catamaran

Reuters - Business Video Online (Mar. 30, 2015) — The $12.8 billion merger will combine the U.S.&apos; third and fourth largest pharmacy benefit managers. Analysts say smaller PBMs could also merge. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
S. Leone in New Anti-Ebola Lockdown

S. Leone in New Anti-Ebola Lockdown

AFP (Mar. 28, 2015) — Sierra Leone imposed a three-day nationwide lockdown Friday for the second time in six months in a bid to prevent a resurgence of the deadly Ebola virus. Duration: 01:17 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins