At work I’ve usually KSKA, my local public radio station, playing all day. Just now I heard a segment on a show called The Health Show in which they were talking with their diet & lifestyle consultant Dr. Stephanie Beling about exercise among the overweight & obese. Really encouraging stuff! The upshot is that exercise is really beneficial for overweight/obese people even if they don’t lose much weight from it. “As a matter of fact,” Beling says, “Fitness may trump fatness.” Beling discussed a study of 2600 people over 60 years old, examining how their weight & fitness affected their death rate. They found that fitness — measured in the study by their ability to walk on a treadmill — provides protection against mortality regardless of their weight. Even just three ten-minute walks a day can have this beneficial effect. Beling also had a couple of anecdotes about obese men she met who greatly reduced their weight & need for medications, & greatly improved their health, simply from walking.
You can hear the entire story (8:51) from this page at the Health Show (scroll to bottom). It’s in Real Audio format.
I did a little checking on ScienceDaily, & found a story about the study Dr. Beling was referring to: “Fitness Level, Not Body Fat, May Be Stronger Predictor Of Longevity For Older Adults” (Dec. 7, 2007).