Obese women need just 30 minutes of exercise to stay fit

March 14th, 2008 - 11:24 am ICT by admin  

Washington, March 14 (IANS) Sedentary, overweight or obese women need as little as 10 to 30 minutes of daily exercise to improve the quality of their life. This finding emerges from a re-look at the Dose Response to Exercise in postmenopausal Women (DREW) study - the largest randomised, controlled trial examining the role of exercise in postmenopausal women that was first published in 2007.

These secondary results - presented Thursday at the American Heart Association’s Conference on Nutrition, Physical Activity and Metabolism - focus on quality of life among 430 women divided into four groups: three exercising at various levels and one control group that did not.

Participants “in the highest exercise group saw the greatest improvements in most quality of life scales, the women in the lowest exercise group also saw improvements”, said Angela Thompson, co-author of the study.

“Walking a little bit every day will help tremendously. Walk with your mother, a neighbour or friend. A little physical activity will improve your quality of life,” Thompson added.

“The public health message is tremendous, because it provides further support for the notion that even if someone cannot exercise an hour or more daily, getting out and exercising 10 to 30 minutes per day is beneficial, too.”

All participants in the exercise groups reported a statistically significant improvement in social functioning, compared to those in the control group of women who didn’t exercise.

However, women who participated in more exercise, from 135 to 150 minutes a week, also showed significant improvements in general health, vitality and mental health.

After exercising six months, the women improved almost seven percent in physical function and general health, 16.6 percent in vitality, 11.5 percent in performing work or other activities, 11.6 percent in emotional health and more than five percent in social functioning.

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