Aerobic exercise better for overweight girls than strength work

New research from Pittsburgh Children’s Hospital has found that aerobic exercise may be the best bet in the battle against childhood obesity.

The study found that aerobic exercise, such as running, beat resistance training in the fat loss stakes. Significantly, the findings showed that the health risks surrounding obesity were reduced further by aerobic exercise over strength training. 

The study enlisted 44 obese girls between the ages of 12 and 18 and divided them into three groups. The first group ran on the treadmill for an hour three times a week for three months, the second lifted weights for each 60 minute session, and the third did not participate in any exercise.

The results showed fat loss from both exercise groups but only those who engaged in aerobic exercise had substantial reductions in visceral fat. Visceral fat is believed to be responsible for serious health problems such heart disease, strokes and diabetes and is situated deeply within the body and surrounds internal organs.

The girls in the study who performed aerobic exercise group were also the only ones who improved their insulin sensitivity, this is a risk factor for type 2 diabetes that’s linked to obesity. 

Read the full study here.