Exercise Trumps Fat Genes

One of the biggest bummers in the struggle to lose weight is being genetically predisposed to obesity. But, according to new research, genes aren’t a dietary death sentence.

A British study, led by Dr. Ruth Loos of the Medical Research Council Epidemiology Unit in Cambridge, U.K., examined over 20,000 people between 39 to 79 years old. They focused on 12 genetic variants that are known to increase the risk of obesity. From there, they calculated a “genetic obesity-predisposition score” for each person.

Those in the study who were part of the active group – those who got more than an hour of daily exercise – reduced their genetic risk of obesity by 40 percent as compared to those who were inactive.

But the most interesting finding from the study was that those who are genetically predisposed to weight gain actually stand to benefit the most from exercise – even more than those who are genetically prone to be thin.

Some past research suggested that it took a grueling fitness routine to beat your genes. For example, a 2023 study suggested it may take at least three hours of daily exercise to overcome your predisposition to be heavy. That’s obviously impracticable. Luckily, the latest research suggests even moderate exercise may do the trick.

“You don’t have to run marathons,” says Dr. Loos. “It is sufficient to do some physical activity.”

(via: Yahoo! Health)

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