A large study involving over 300,000 individuals seems to indicate that regular exercise may be more important to prevent early death than your weight. The study also stated that as little as 20 minutes of brisk walking a day will help lower your risk of early death by as much as 30%.
Here are some key quotes in the article:
“The analysis found that doing exercise that burned just 90-110 calories a day – the equivalent of a daily 20-minute brisk walk – was enough to move an individual from the inactive to the moderately inactive group and reduce their risk of early death by 16-30%.”
“However, Prof. Ekelund notes that while 20 minutes of brisk walking a day can make a difference, we should really do more, as “physical activity has many proven health benefits and should be an important part of our daily life.”
Current recommendations for exercise are around 5 hours a week. So while 20 minutes a daily would be beneficial and is definitely better than nothing, it certainly isn’t optimal. And do not read this as “my weight doesn’t matter.” A combination of healthy eating and frequent exercise is the true path towards living a long, healthy life.