Friday, 28 July, 2017

Stanford researchers find intriguing clues about obesity by counting steps via smartphones

I Am Fat T-shirt Counting steps via smartphones reveals intriguing clues about obesity
Ben Pena | 13 July, 2017, 13:06

The laziest country is Indonesia whose residents barely walk 3,513 steps every day.

By comparison, Americans walked an average 4,774 steps a day while Britons managed a higher 5,444 steps daily. Step counts were highest in Hong Kong, where people took an average of 6,880 steps a day, followed by China, with 6,189 steps, and Ukraine, with 6,107 steps.

Jure Leskovec, also part of the research team, said: "When activity inequality is greatest, women's activity is reduced much more dramatically than men's activity, and thus the negative connections to obesity can affect women more greatly". However, the researchers found that women recorded comparatively less activity than men in places that are less walkable.

The study used data from smartphones to analyze the habits of 717,000 men and women from 111 countries whose step counts were studied for an average of 95 days (the 46 countries included in the rankings were those in which researchers had data from at least 1,000 participants). It also provided key demographic data: age, gender, height and weight.

Researchers from the Stanford University made use of step-counters installed in phones of people. But San Francisco has both the highest walkability score - nearly double that of San Jose and Fremont - and the lowest level of activity inequality, she said. But there is one more particular area where it features among the top most countries and you would be surprised to hear that.

But if Indonesians took the least number of steps per day, why is it not the most laziest country? In the United States, people walk 4,774 on an average, based on smartphone walking activity data. The research was done on smartphones who have a built-in accelerometer which can record steps that let the researchers use their anonymous data.

Tim Althoff, one of the researchers, said: "For instance, Sweden had one of the smallest gaps between activity rich and activity poor ... it also had one of the lowest rates of obesity".

Top cop alleges huge corruption in Bengaluru jail involving Sasikala
The bombshell in her letter is that she names her boss, DGP (Prisons) Satyanarayana Rao as one of the recipients of the bribe. Refuting Roopa's allegations at a press conference today, Rao said no "undue favour" was being shown to Sasikala.

Meanwhile, the United States ranked fourth from the bottom in overall activity inequality, indicating a large gap between activity rich and activity poor.

Analysing the level of activity of more than 700,000 people, the team found it wasn't the average level of physical activity in each country that proved the biggest predictor of obesity - it was the amount of "activity inequality" within each population that increased the prevalence of obesity.

The team used the Gini index that's traditionally used to calculate income inequality to measure activity inequality in each country.

"In cities that are more walkable, everyone tends to take more daily steps, whether male or female, young or old, [of] healthy weight or obese", said study co-author Jennifer Hicks, the director of data science for the Mobilize Center at Stanford.

"This opens the door to new ways of doing science at a much larger scale", Delp said.

Scott Delp, a professor of bioengineering and one of the researchers, told the BBC: "The study is 1,000 times larger than any previous study on human movement".

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