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Regular exercise improves more than just your self-image.
The prevalence of obesity has dramatically increased -- and the trend is often called "globesity." According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, an adult who has a BMI of 30 or greater is considered obese. Exercise can play a valuable role in preventing obesity-related diseases like diabetes and cardiovascular disease. However, exercise can also cause joint problems and lead to discouragement if precautions are not taken.
Obesity in combination with physical inactivity greatly increases the chances of developing type 2 diabetes. Type 2 diabetes is characterized by a combination of beta-cell failure -- cells that release insulin -- or insulin resistance. When your tissues have a poor response to insulin, your blood sugars cannot be controlled and hyperglycemia -- high blood sugar -- can result. The good news is exercise can reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. According to the "International Journal of Sports Medicine," exercise can play an essential role in the prevention of insulin insensitivity.
Halting Heart Disease
Those who carry excess fat around their abdominal region -- also known as apple shaped -- are at an increased risk for developing cardiovascular disease. According to "Experimental and Clinical Cardiology," men with a waist circumference greater than 40 inches and women with a waist circumference greater than 35 inches are placed in a high-risk group for developing cardiovascular disease. Therefore, performing regular physical activity can help you lose inches off your waist, which will decrease your chances of developing cardiovascular disease or other complications.
Increased Joint Pressure
Carrying around extra body fat can put a huge strain on your joints -- especially the knees and hips. A 2013 study published in "Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise," found when the foot of an obese person hits the ground, the knees and hips experience larger forces than the joints of an individual of healthy weight. If the pace of the exercise is increased, there can even be an increased risk for arthritis. Therefore, it may be necessary to perform low-impact exercises instead of running until you lose some pounds. Excellent low-impact exercises can include water aerobics, cycling or using an elliptical.
Take it Slow
Obese individuals may attempt to jump right into a vigorous exercise routine. Doing so can dramatically decrease energy and motivation. According to the journal of "Experimental and Clinical Cardiology," moderate exercise is the most desirable activity, because the physical activity does not have to be high in order to provide the same health benefits. Aim for 20 minutes of moderate low-impact exercise a couple times a week. From there you can gradually increase the days and duration of the workouts.