Why We're Losing the War On Obesity
You've probably heard that weight loss is 80 percent diet, 20 percent exercise, but perhaps we should place a greater emphasis on physical activity if we wish to prevent the rise of obesity, says researchers from the University of Colorado School of Medicine.
A new paper in the journal Circulation takes a look at our attempts to combat weight gain in America. Instead of placing the focus mainly on restricting calorie consumption as we have in the past, the researchers argue that we should look at achieving "energy balance." Translation: We need to factor in how much we're eating, how much we're moving, and how much we currently weigh, since all play a role in metabolism.
Generally speaking, people like to blame weight gain either on increased food consumption or decreased levels of physical activity, and we've largely tackled the issue by going on any number of diets. But constant dieting is hard to maintain in the long run, can increase hunger, and—when resulting in weight loss—decreases the amount of calories your body needs. Rather, to prevent weight gain, we should also emphasize moving more. The researchers believe that it is more realistic for people to increase their daily activity than to constantly restrict their diets.
While it is difficult to treat obesity, preventing it seems more possible. They estimate that if we cut our calorie intake by 100 calories a day through both diet and exercise, we could prevent 90% of adult weight gain.
"What we are really talking about is changing the message from 'Eat Less, Move More' to 'Move More, Eat Smarter,'" said lead author James O. Hill, Ph.D. in a press release.
Related: Move More All Day
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