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A new study was designed to pinpoint the specific types of physical activity that are most effective for individuals who are genetically prone to obesity.
08-01-2019

Certain exercises are more effective for those predisposed to obesity

Certain exercises are more effective for those predisposed to obesity. While being overweight is commonly related to lifestyle and dietary choices, many people who struggle with obesity have inherited multiple genes that predispose them to excessive weight gain.

A new study led by Wan-Yu Lin of National Taiwan University was designed to pinpoint the specific types of physical activity that are most effective for individuals who are genetically prone to obesity.

According to the World Health Organization, more than 1.9 billion adults and 340 million children and adolescents were obese in 2016. Doctors recommend exercise to help combat this condition, but little has been known about what kind of exercise may be most beneficial for individuals who have obesity genes. 

For the current investigation, the team analyzed the genetics and self-reported exercise routines of 18,424 Han Chinese adults between the ages of 30 and 70 years old. The researchers were particularly focused on the five measures of obesity, such as body mass index (BMI), body fat percentage, and waist-to-hip ratio. Certain exercises are more effective for those predisposed to obesity

The study revealed that regular jogging is the best type of exercise for managing obesity among those who have a higher genetic risk. Additional recommendations for this group include mountain climbing, walking, power walking, dancing, and long yoga practices.

The researchers were surprised to find that cycling, stretching exercises, swimming and Dance Dance Revolution did not counteract the genetic effects on obesity.

The findings indicate that when it comes to obesity, the hereditary risk can be reduced by specific types of regular exercise. As the worldwide epidemic of obesity continues to grow, the benefits of physical exercise cannot be overstated.

The study is published in the journal PLOS Genetics.

By Chrissy Sexton, Earth.com Staff Writer

Image Credit: Shutterstock/TOM Studio

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