According to a new study published in the online journal Preventive Medicine, American women are less likely than men to get at least 30 minutes of exercise a day.
Current recommendations call for adults to get at least 30 minutes of moderate to vigorous aerobic activity most days of the week to ward off multiple health problems, including an obesity-related condition called metabolic syndrome.
Metabolic syndrome refers to a collection of risk factors — including high cholesterol, high blood pressure and extra belly weight — that increase the risk for heart disease, stroke and type 2 diabetes.
The Oregon State University study of more than 1,000 women and men found that women averaged only about 18 minutes of moderate-to-vigorous exercise daily, while men averaged 30 minutes. Participants wore an accelerometer, a device that measured how much daily activity they were getting.
People who got at least 30 minutes of exercise a day were less likely to be depressed, less likely to have high cholesterol and less likely to have metabolic syndrome, the researchers said.