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Women and exercise: Vigorous exercise, 26% body fat vs no exercise, 33% body fat
Friday, October 22, 2010 6:21 am Email this article
The more vigorous a woman exercises, the lower her body mass index (BMI), the lower her percent body fat, and the lower her waist-to-hip ratio according to a study from Kansas State University. BMI
BMI according to exercise intensity: 27, 26, 25 and 24
The average body mass index (BMI) for women who engaged in either no physical activity, some light physical activity, moderately-intense physical activity, or hard, vigorous physical activity was 27, 26, 25 and 24, respectively.
Percent Body Fat
Percent body fat according to exercise intensity: 33%, 32%, 30% and 28%
The average percent body fat for these groups of women of increasing physical activity was 33 percent, 32 percent, 30 percent and 28 percent, respectively.
Waist-to-hip ratio according to exercise intensity: 0.84, 0.83, 0.81, and 0.79
The average waist-to-hip ratio for these groups of women was 0.84, 0.83, 0.81, and 0.79, respectively.
Note: The data above was estimated from the figure on page 1861 of the paper.
30% Body Fat
Half had more than 30% body fat
More than half (54 percent) of women had more than 30 percent body fat.
35% Body Fat
One-third had more than 35% body fat
More than one-third (34 percent) had more than 35 percent body fat.
Waist-To-Hip Ratio Greater than 0.8
Half had waist-to-hip ratio greater than 0.8
More than half of the women had a waist-to-hip ratio greater than 0.80, which is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease.
Note: The study did not gather data for the duration of exercise, only the intensity.
Subjects: 1004 women 20-55 years old
The study included 1,004 premenopausal women who were 20- to 55-years-old.
Holcomb C, Heim D, Loughin T. Physical activity minimizes the association of body fatness with abdominal obesity in white, premenopausal women: results from the third national health and nutrition examination survey. J Am Diet Assoc. 2004 Dec, 104(12):1859-62.
AUTHOR’S CONTACT INFORMATION
Carol Ann Holcomb, PhD
Department of Human Nutrition
Kansas State University
210 Justin Hall
Manhattan, KS 66506-1407
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