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Abstract

Objective monitoring of physical activity confirms the impression formed from questionnaire responses that both adults and children who are overweight or obese take less physical activity than their peers who have a healthy body mass. Pedometer/accelerometer data provides relatively precise information on the magnitude of the deficit in physical activity, which amounts to around 2000 steps/day, or 15–20 minutes/day of moderate and/or vigorous physical activity. In some studies of those who are grossly obese, there is also evidence of an increase in sedentary time. The overall difference in daily energy expenditure between those of normal weight and those who are overweight or obese is quite small, underlining that the build-up of fat usually occurs over several years. Pedometers and accelerometers provide a useful initial stimulus to greater physical activity, although there remains a need to examine how to maximize the impact of instrumentation and to sustain its motivational effect. There is now good evidence that for at least a few months, the physical activity of an obese adult can be augmented by 2000–3000 steps/day, and that this initiates a slow but consistent loss of body fat (0.05–0.1 kg/week). Relative to dieting, the increase of physical activity also brings other health advantages, including increases of aerobic power and lean tissue, and a decrease of metabolic and cardiac risk factors.

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Shephard, R.J. (2016). Excessive Appetite vs. Inadequate Physical Activity in the Pathology of Obesity: Evidence from Objective Monitoring. In: Shephard, R., Tudor-Locke, C. (eds) The Objective Monitoring of Physical Activity: Contributions of Accelerometry to Epidemiology, Exercise Science and Rehabilitation. Springer Series on Epidemiology and Public Health. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-29577-0_9

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-29577-0_9

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