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According to the latest studies coming out of The University of Florida, maintaining a healthy weight, whilst living a sedentary lifestyle may put you at the same heart attack and stroke risks as people who are overweight.

The research found that people who were of a normal weight and spent the majority of their day sitting, whilst still managing 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week had about a 58% lower risk of a heart attack, or stroke than overweight people.

However, when people with a ‘normal’ weight spent the majority of their day sitting with very little additional exercise, the risk of serious cardiac complications wasn’t significantly different from that of overweight people.

Just striving to be at a normal weight is not sufficient to be healthy and it may lure people into a false sense of security, by just focusing on the scale weight. A sedentary lifestyle counteracts the advantage of maintaining a healthy weight and increases the cardiovascular risk to that of their overweight counterparts.

Unfortunately, nowadays many people have sedentary jobs, so it is even more important to make time for moderate to vigorous exercise. It doesn’t have to be in a gym, or a class, but can be as simple as taking brisk walks or playing with your children, or taking up a sport.

Having a ‘healthy’ BMI isn’t a good enough predictor of overall health and other lifestyle factors need to be addressed.

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