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North American Journal of Medical Sciences

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Biochemical markers, Exercise -- Health aspects, Cardiovascular fitness


Background: No studies have addressed the "fit but fat" paradigm using accelerometry data.

Aim: The study was to determine if 1) higher levels of accelerometer-determined physical activity are favorably associated with biomarkers in overweight or obese persons (objective 1); and 2) overweight or obese individuals who are sufficiently active have better or similar biomarker levels than normal weight persons who are not sufficiently active (objective 2).

Materials and Methods: Data from the 2003-2006 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey were analyzed and included 5,146 participants aged 20-85 years.

Results: Regarding objective 1, obese active individuals had more favorable waist circumference, C-reactive protein, white blood cells, and neutrophil levels when compared to obese inactive individuals; similar results were found for overweight adults. Regarding objective 2, there were no significant differences between normal weight inactive individuals and overweight active individuals for nearly all biomarkers. Similarly, there were no significant differences between normal weight inactive individuals and obese active individuals for white blood cells, neutrophils, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, total cholesterol, triglycerides, glucose, or homocysteine.

Conclusions: Physical activity has a protective effect on biomarkers in normal, overweight, and obese individuals, and overweight (not obese) active individuals have a similar cardiovascular profile than normal weight inactive individuals.


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