QOTD: Fitness and fatness

From Reuters, on a study in patients with coronary artery disease that looked at fitness levels and BMI:

[Heart specialist and study leader Dr. Francisco] Lopes-Jimenez said, the lesson for patients is clear: try to improve your physical fitness. “It is much easier to become fit than it is to become slim,” he said. “Anybody who has gone into an exercise program would agree with that.”

While Lopes-Jimenez seems to presume his patients want to exercise (or otherwise take action to improve their health) it is radical to see a heart specialist stating that a person can improve their fitness without being slim.  Or that exercise doesn’t automagically cause slimness.  Or that it can be easier to become fitter than to become thinner — which has certainly been true in my case.

11 thoughts on “QOTD: Fitness and fatness

  1. It’s about time that doctors started saying this, and it’s waaaaay past time that the media reported on it instead of harping on losing weight all the time.

    • Yes. If you want to do something for your health, exercise is great. Just don’t expect to lose a lot of weight because of it. ;)

  2. I wonder how many people are like me, and mistrust his words because we’ve been burned too many times by medical professionals being all “oh it’s not about weight, but we need you to start exercising for your health!”… until a few months or a year later, when we’ve been doing their damned exercises, go back in and get told we need to start restricting calories because the exercise regime alone isn’t working.

    Pretty obvious that the goal all along was weight loss, they just figured if they said it was for some other reason we’d stop insisting on being disgusting pigs and they could sneak weight loss in. As if there are just billions of people who aren’t a socially acceptable size who would resist losing weight if it actually happened and worked.

    • we’ve been burned too many times by medical professionals

      This is true and worth thinking about. The context here is a researcher with results showing that the thin and unfit coronary artery disease patients had 3-5 times the risk of death than the fat and fit ones. Would he probably suggest fit patients also lose weight? Perhaps. But given the abysmal chances of lasting weight loss I’d hope he’d think before he spoke.

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