Keeping obesity at bay: Why diet is more important than exercise when you're trying to lose weight

Sarah Spickernell
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Cutting down on fatty foods is key (Source: Getty)

The world has a growing obesity problem, but this doesn't mean you need to get a gym membership and start running everywhere - being more active just won't make a difference, according to a group of medical experts in the UK.

To keep the weight off, it's going to involve limiting the amount of sweet treats and rich carbs we eat, since going for a 10km jog afterwards won't make up for it.

This goes against what we have always been told - that we should stay slim by being active, and the medical experts say this is the fault of the food industry. In an article published in the British Medical Journal, they say it's time to "burst the myth" about obesity.

While exercise has many proven health benefits including reducing the risk of dementia and heart disease, the doctors accuse the food industry of luring people into a false sense of security that doing exercise means they are free to eat fatty foods. They say the methods used are “chillingly similar” to those of Big Tobacco on smoking.

With almost half the global population expected to be either overweight or obese by 2030, our over-indulgent lifestyles are causing a pretty alarming problem, so it's important for us to be aware of how to prevent gaining excessive weight.

"An obese person does not need to do one iota of exercise to lose weight, they just need to eat less,” Dr Aseem Malhotra told the BBC. “My biggest concern is that the messaging that is coming to the public suggests you can eat what you like as long as you exercise. That is unscientific and wrong. You cannot outrun a bad diet."
So all in all it's bad news for those who think you can eat five doughnuts after spending an hour at the gym.

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