Academic journal article Perspectives in Public Health

The Role of Physical Activity in Reducing Obesity

Academic journal article Perspectives in Public Health

The Role of Physical Activity in Reducing Obesity

Article excerpt

The role of physical activity in reducing obesity has been the subject of ongoing debate. Research published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine argues that physical activity does not promote weight loss and criticises the food industry for its emphasis on how physical activity and sport can help prevent people becoming very overweight. Malhotra and co-authors emphasise that no amount of physical activity can counteract a poor diet.

However, others argue that a healthy lifestyle will include both a balanced diet and exercise. Professor Susan Jebb, Professor of Diet and Population Health at Oxford University, highlighted shortcomings of this research: weight loss programmes which combine diet and physical activity are the most successful route to weight loss.

While the Harvard School does not state that physical activity alone can counteract obesity, it does highlight activity as the most variable factor. Activity is something which may help people stay at a healthy weight but can also lower the risk of heart disease, diabetes, stroke, high blood pressure, osteoporosis and certain cancers, as well as reduce stress and boost mood. …

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