A study carried out by researchers at the University of Florida, US, has revealed that about 40 percent of people who are considered to maintain a healthy body weight are pre-diabetic.
According to the study which was published in the American journal of preventive medicine, pre-diabetics is a condition where the body has elevated blood sugar levels but can not be diagnosed as full-blown diabetes.
“We have found that a lot of people who we would consider to be at healthy weight — they’re not overweight or obese — are not metabolically healthy,” said Arch Mainous III, lead researcher.
The research team analysed data from more than 1,000 people, aged 20 and older, in England. All had a healthy weight and no diagnosis of diabetes.
Those with an inactive lifestyle were more likely to have a blood sugar level of 5.7 or above, which can be considered as prediabetes.
About one-quarter of all inactive people and more than 40 percent of inactive people aged 45 years and older met the criteria for prediabetes or diabetes.
Although the study doesn’t establish a direct cause-and-effect relationship, these inactive people may have unhealthy normal-weight obesity or skinny fat; a high proportion of fat to lean muscle.
“Our findings suggest that sedentary lifestyle is overlooked when we think in terms of healthy weight. We shouldn’t focus only on calorie intake, weight or [body mass index] at the expense of activity,” Mainous said.
Because prediabetes increases the risk of diabetes and other health problems, the study adds to growing evidence that inactivity poses a risk to health, the researchers explained.
“Don’t focus solely on the scale and think you’re OK. If you have a sedentary lifestyle, make sure you get up and move”.
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