Genetics of Exercise Behavior

J.H. Stubbe, E.J.C. de Geus

Research output: Chapter in Book / Report / Conference proceedingChapterAcademic


A sedentary lifestyle has been cited as one of the main causes of the explosive rise in obesity that starts at an increasingly younger age(Martinez-Gonzalez, Martinez, Hu, Gibney, & Kearney, 1999). Furthermore, regular exercisers have lower risks for cardiovascular disease (CVD) and type 2 diabetes than non-exercisers (Albright et al., 2000; Kaplan, Strawbridge, Cohen, & Hungerford, 1996; Kesaniemi et al., 2001) and the percentage of people at risk because of inactivity is higher than for hypertension, smoking, and cholesterol (Caspersen, 1987; Stephens & Craig, 1990). Despite these well-documented benefits of exercise, a large proportion of adults in the Western world do not exercise on a regular basis (Crespo, Keteyian, Heath, & Sempos, 1996; Haase, Steptoe, Sallis, & Wardle, 2004; Stephens & Craig, 1990). As a consequence, a sedentary lifestyle – and the accompanying risk for obesity – remains a major threat to health in today’s society. This is reflected in public health recommendations which unanimously include an encouragement to a more active lifestyle (WHO/FIMS Committee on Physical Activity for Health, 1995; U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2005).
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHandbook of Behavior Genetics
EditorsYong-Kiu Kim
Place of PublicationNew York
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9780387767277
ISBN (Print)9780387767260
Publication statusPublished - 2009


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