By KATE PICKLES FOR MAILONLINE
Brisk walking is better for keeping weight off than going to the gym, a study has found.
Women of all ages and men over 50 who regularly walked for more than 30 minutes were found to weigh less than those who took part in vigorous activities like jogging or cycling.
Research by the London School of Economics discovered people who walked a lot had lower BMIs and smaller waists than those who took part in regular sport.
Dr Grace Lordan, a specialist in health economics who led the research, compared the measurements of people who took part in activities which increased heart rate and caused perspiring.
She compared people who said they regularly did half-an-hour of fast-paced walking to those who did the same amount of heavy housework, manual labour and sports like rugby.
Waistline and BMI measurements showed that men and women who regularly walked briskly for more than 30 minutes had lower BMIs and smaller waists than those who engaged in regular exercise.
The findings were based on physical activity levels from the annual Health Survey for England between 1999 and 2012.
Government guidelines suggest adults should do 150 minutes or more of moderate-intensity physical activity every week, but there is no suggestion of which activity is the most effective.
Currently, 32million adults in the UK are overweight – about 60 per cent of the adult population – of whom 12.5million are obese.