Using a physical activity time machine to explain the obesity epidemic.

What caused the current obesity epidemic? Is it that we are eating more now? Or are we less active than we were? Most likely, it is a combination of both. And although the typical American diet is given plenty of blame for causing people to gain weight, a low level of physical activity deserves attention, too.

One way to answer this question is to look back at what life was like about 100 years ago, when obesity was uncommon. Unfortunately, no one thought to make accurate measures of daily activity back then. But there is a way to go back in time and assess the diet and physical activity that was common 100 years ago.

In my Health & Fitness column in the Aiken Standard this week I wrote about an interesting study that essentially took researchers back in time to measure physical activity. The results show that we are much less active today, which certainly plays a big role in the obesity epidemic.

You can learn more about the study I mentioned here.

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