Saturday, April 5, 2008
Step it Up
I just read about an intriguing small study done in Sweden that worked "backwards" and showed that reduced exercise promoted chronic disorders and premature mortality.
They took healthy non smoker men who took no medication and without any family history of diabetes. These people walked over 3500 steps a day (measured with a pedometer) or did more than 2 hours of exercise a week. In summary, active, healthy people (just like you?).
The study had the subjects reduce their daily steps. They had them ride in elevators instead of stairs and ride in cars instead of walk or bike. They reduced their daily steps to 1500 but they kept their diets the same. That's all they did!
Within three weeks the subjects developed impaired glucose tolerance, increased triglyceride levels and 7% increase in intra abdominal (waist) fat.
Think about it folks...by working backward they created serious health risk problems in healthy guys by making them sedentary. It reminds me of the great documentary film "Supersize Me" where he developed severe health problems and obesity by eating nothing but burgers, frys and soft drinks for a month. Our bodies are perfect machines that need exercise and activity. Lay around and the machine fails.
Take home message - Start walking and prolong your life.
Posted by Toni Brayer, MD at 8:00 AM