If you’re overweight or obese, exercise alone doesn't appear to reduce risk of heart disease, according to a study that pokes a hole in the “fit but fat” theory. The study followed nearly 39,000 women over 11 years, and found even active overweight women were 54% more likely to develop heart disease. For the obese, that figure ballooned to 87%, the AP reports.
“Physical activity really does make an impact,” one researcher said. But “if you're overweight or obese, you can't really get back to that lower risk entirely with just physical activity.” But one proponent of the “fit but fat” theory says the study is flawed because it relied on the women to self-report their activity levels.