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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Geoff D.C. Ball, BSc, RD (University of Alberta)
Description: The editors of this exceptional text details the costs, causes, and consequences of obesity, along with the role of physical activity in weight control and health.
Purpose: While in-depth, this book is not intended to be completely exhaustive. This first edition was developed to fill a perceived need in the exercise science and sports medicine communities and is meant to encourage those who may pursue a research career in physical activity and obesity.
Audience: The editor is one of the world's most accomplished researchers in the study of obesity, genetics, and physical activity. The contributing authors represent a collection of leaders from their respective disciplines and have done an admirable job of providing clinicians and researchers alike with an up-to-date review of the research.
Features: The first half of this four-section, 19-chapter compilation is dedicated to the present state of obesity (e.g., prevalence, morbidity/mortality, and economic costs) and the biological and behavioral determinants of obesity. In the second half the role of physical activity in the prevention and treatment of obesity in different populations and health and fitness are underscored. In particular, several current and important research questions are addressed, such as: What is the role of physical activity in maintaining weight loss? (Chapter 16) Can obese people be "fat and fit?" (Chapter 18) How can obese people achieve and maintain an active lifestyle? (Chapter 19) In light of 'the obesity epidemic' and the inability of most overweight/obese individuals to maintain weight loss, a greater understanding of these areas is vital.
Assessment: This timely book is presented in a logical, straightforward manner. While some issues are discussed more than once, the overlap does not detract from the value of the text as a whole. By combining traditional topics with several emerging issues, the editor has made a valuable contribution to the field of physical activity and obesity research.