In the public eye, if someone is overweight, the immediate thought is that they are unhealthy, living an unfit lifestyle, and have a higher risk of illness, or even death. Seems pretty rough, right? Well, what if I told you that appearances could be deceiving?
One study has found that even if someone is overweight, that doesn’t necessarily predict how susceptible they are to disease or how long they have left. Let’s take a look at the one thing that could save your life, even if you don’t see a change on the number on the scale.
Stop Fretting About the Numbers
Do you jump on the scale each morning?
Are you constantly trying to figure out your BMI (body mass index)?
While it’s important to use the government recommended figures as a guideline, they are certainly not perfect. A study that has been published in Circulation has demonstrated just how those numbers shouldn’t be so obsessed over.
What Did the Study Say?
The study had more than 14,000 subjects. All of whom were not dangerously obese but not bodybuilders either. The subjects were a good sample of the average guy. These men were followed for 11 years and researchers paid close attention to whether the men were exercising or not. The researchers then took measurements of cardiovascular health.
Men who maintained a consistent pattern of fitness, always doing the same routines each week, reduced their chances of dying from cardiovascular disease by up to 30%. For men who pushed themselves to new levels of fitness intensity, they saw a 40% reduction. Here’s the most important part: The men saw these improvements even if they didn’t lose weight!
The men who stopped exercising or reduced their levels of exercise saw an increase in their risk of death from cardiovascular issues.
Having a Better Outlook
This long term study shows that the numbers don’t always signify the most ideal health outcome. The subjects in this study who were exercising may not have been losing weight but they weren’t unhealthy. This sends a powerful message to those who struggle each year trying to achieve a certain number. The message is that it’s the act of exercising consistently that’s important, not a set number.
Even though exercise is one of the major determining factors of your risk of death, that doesn’t mean you should be ignoring your day to day nutritional needs. It’s important to be exercising AND eating a well-balanced diet. It doesn’t need to be perfect but it should be focusing on natural, whole foods. Here are the things that should be making up the majority of your diet:
When it comes to carbohydrates, choose 100% whole grain and whole wheat options. Do not eat processed, bleached pasta or white bread. Again, it’s okay to fall off the bandwagon from time to time but you should be striving to maintain a healthy regimen of diet and exercise.
Tell Us What You Think!
How long have you been struggling with weight loss?
What do you think about this new study?
Is it giving you hope? Or just reinforcing your current fitness goals?
Let us know in the comments below.