January 19, 2023
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Lack of Fitness and its Risks

If you do not have proper fitness then you expose yourself to many health risks which can impair your ability to normal physical functions as well as result in death.


Some of the common problems that occur if you are not fit include hypertension, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes and similar other problems which can be life threatening.

Study Analyzing Lack of Fitness and its Effects

Few years ago a study was performed to check the effect of lack of fitness on people of certain age group. More than 25,000 participants took part in the study which was conducted over a period of 23 years from 1970 till 1993. As part of the study the participants had to complete questionnaire to provide details about their family as well as personal health history, demographics and health habits.
They also had to undergo physical examination in which their weight, height, lipid, blood pressure and plasma glucose levels while fasting were recorded. People were also categorized as overweight, normal weight and obese at the onset of the study.

Additionally, the participants were checked to ascertain whether they were affected by any of the following 6 health risk factors:
  • Cardiovascular diseases
  • High serum cholesterol levels
  • Type 2 Diabetes
  • Smoking
  • Low cardio-respiratory fitness established using maximal exercise test.
  • Hypertension identified by previous history of hypertension or high blood pressure.
What were the results?
The results were categorized for all the three different weight categories:
  1. Normal Weight: Out of all participants, 41% fall in the normal weight category and of them 367 people died out of which 126 deaths were because of cardiovascular diseases.
  2. Overweight: People falling in the overweight category was 46% and 500 of them died with 237 of those deaths caused by cardiovascular diseases.
  3. Obese: Out of the participants 13% were obese and from them 158 people died with cardiovascular diseases responsible for 76 of the deaths.
BMI and Different Diseases
In the study it was also found that with increase in body mass index (BMI) into obese category the occurrence of cardiovascular diseases, hypertension and diabetes also increased. The study also concluded that in comparison to people with normal weight, obese and overweight people were more inclined to smoke, had sedentary lifestyle, were suffering from high blood pressure and had higher triglyceride as well as cholesterol levels.
Increase in BMI and Death Risk
It was seen in the study that as BMI increased, death risk also increased for all the 6 risk factors which were mentioned above. Risk of death was much higher for cardiovascular diseases with overweight people having 4 times more chance of death from cardiovascular diseases as compared to any of the other risk factors while for obese participants this figure of likely deaths from cardiovascular diseases was estimated to be 5 times greater than other risks.

Thus the study clearly highlights the fact that if you do not have proper physical fitness then many diseases can occur which can be life threatening at times.