December 4, 2015 – Fat and Exercise?
Anchor lead: Can you exercise away the risk of belly fat? Elizabeth Tracey reports
If you’re carrying around a lot of fat around your waist but are otherwise of normal weight, you’re still at increased risk of death compared to those without that fat distribution, a recent study shows. Wendy Bennett, an obesity researcher at Johns Hopkins, says while so-called spot reduction doesn’t work, she wonders if exercise might help.
Bennett: What happens if you’re more physically active? If you have higher central obesity we think that you probably don’t have high lean muscle mass. It’s an indicator of lower muscle mass also, and so would somebody modify their risk, reduce their risk if they were exercising more regularly? We don’t know how modifiable some of these are. If you change your health behaviors and you reduce your central obesity how easy is it to reduce your waist hip ratio? :30
Bennett would like to see studies looking at the potential for exercise to ameliorate this risk, but says for now, awareness is important. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.