Exercise is good for your heart, regardless of your body weight

Women who are considered overweight or obese could lower their risk of suffering from cardiovascular diseases by adopting a more active lifestyle.

Women who are considered overweight or obese could lower their risk of suffering from cardiovascular diseases by adopting a more active lifestyle.

According to a recent study conducted among close to 40,000 American women aged 45 and over, those who were obese and sedentary were two-and-a-half times more likely to suffer from a cardiovascular disease than women who had a healthier body weight and a more active lifestyle. For obese individuals, physical activity partially cancelled, among others, their additional risk of being afflicted with cardiovascular diseases directly caused by their excess weight. Hence, obese women who expended at least 1,000 calories per week had a lower risk of suffering from heart disease than women who were both obese and inactive.

It would seem however that even great quantities of physical activity are insufficient to fully reverse the elevated risk of suffering from heart diseases for women who are considered overweight.

Regardless of body weight however, these data truly highlight how important it is that all women be more physically active and maintain a healthy body weight to help reduce their risk of suffering from heart diseases. In this study, the risk of cardiovascular disease was 33% lower in women who walked at least four hours per week, that is to say a little more than a half hour each day, than in those who were not active at all.

Yet, a great majority of Canadian women are not physically active enough, and this in spite of the fact that experts recommend all adults do approximately one hour of moderate physical activity per day, on most days of the week. You should also know that fad diets are temporary solutions that are unlikely to help you become healthy and feel good in your own skin. The only long-lasting and truly effective solution is to adopt a healthier lifestyle and be more physically active. The beautiful summer days are upon us, you should learn to appreciate them by being active.

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