Women have to exercise harder than men to lose weight

Experts blame this on muscle mass and hormones

(Image credit: REX)

Experts blame this on muscle mass and hormones

Bad news for women - according to new research we have to do a lot more exercise to get the same results as men.

The study, published in health journal Metabolism, shows women have to diet to get the same health benefits, whereas men can lose weight through exercise alone.

Researchers from the University of Missouri put 75 obese men and women on the same fitness programme, finding men lost weight more easily.

Participants followed a 16-week long programme of cardiovascular exercises. They all worked at an effort of 65 per cent, which was worked out based on each individual's own ability.

Scientists found that despite everyone exercising at relatively the same speed, men got far more health benefits from the exercise than women.

Over the 16-week time period, the women's recovery time did not improve whereas men's did, and men lost more weight.

Speaking to MailOnline, expert Dr Chris Easton, a lecturer in clinical exercise psychology at the University of West Scotland, said: 'This adds to a growing body of evidence that men and women respond to exercise in different ways.

'One main reason for this is body composition - men have a higher proportion of of muscle of women - and muscle has a higher metabolic rate than fat.

'This is crucially important as it means that even when they are resting, men burn more calories than women. This indicates that women really have to look at their diet as well as exercise, whereas men may be able to get by on exercise alone.'


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