Curbing Car Travel is Effective as Cutting Calories for Reducing Body Weight

December 19, 2012

I found an interesting article today that examines a study claiming that cutting cat travel is an effective weight loss strategy. They even go as far as to say that it is just as effective as reducing calories each day. Studies are funny. It seems that they can set them up to show almost any outcome. I’ll posts some highlights and let you decide if this is something you buy into.

Car travel

Both daily automobile travel and calories consumed are related to body weight, and reducing either one, even by a small amount, correlates with a reduction in body mass index (BMI), suggests a new study.

“We’re saying that making small changes in travel or diet choices may lead to comparable obesity reduction, which implies that travel-based interventions may be as effective as dietary interventions,” said graduate student Banafsheh Behzad, a co-author of the study.

In comparison, reducing diet by 100 calories per day would be associated with reducing national average BMI by 0.16 kg/m2 after three years.

If drivers nationwide travelled 1 mile less by car each day, not only would fuel consumption fall, but annual health care costs could drop by billions of dollars as fewer people would be classified as obese or overweight, Jacobson estimated.

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