Exercise Isn't Enough!

Exercise is essential for a healthy life. If we want to lose weight; Exercising is just as important as what we eat. The World Health Organization states that every healthy adult should do 150 minutes of physical activity per week to prevent obesity.

So, is exercise enough to lose weight?

Professor at City University of New York. Herman Pontzer says exercise alone is not enough. Although Pontzer emphasizes the importance of exercising to keep both our body and mind healthy, he states that the most important thing we need to do to prevent unhealthy weight gain and keep our weight in balance is to pay attention to what we eat. 

Why isn't exercise alone enough?

The amount of calories we burn through exercise is less than 30% of our daily calorie loss. On the other hand, we burn more calories in the processes our body does, such as breathing and digesting food. In addition, exercising gives a sense of confidence, and that's why people tend to consume high-calorie foods after exercise. The feeling of hunger after exercise also leads us to overeat.

Increasing exercise time is not enough either. A 2016 study of 332 African and North American adults found that exercising more did not burn more calories. In the study, participants in the first group, who were divided into two groups, burned around 200 calories by doing light exercises. Although the other group did these light activities for longer periods of time, the researchers found no significant increase in energy loss in this group. This result proves the weak effect of doing more physical activity on weight loss.

For exercises to be effective…

Portion control, both in our daily life and after sports, helps not to regain the calories burned with physical activity. For this reason, eating meals on smaller plates can make you feel like you are eating more and be satisfied.

Increasing the consumption of foods containing fiber and protein also creates a feeling of satiety and helps you not get hungry quickly.

In addition, to lose weight, it is useful to stay away from processed foods that are high in calories and low in nutritional value. Therefore, it is necessary to take care to consume as much natural and unprocessed foods as possible. 

More for the curious:

1. https://www.theguardian.com/science/2016/jan/28/study-reveals-that-exercise-alone-wont-cause-weight-loss

2. https://www.healthline.com/health-news/exercise-good-for-you-but-does-it-help-weight-loss

About the author: 

Selin Akbaş – Be People Editor

Selin Akbaş, who completed her undergraduate education at Boğaziçi University, Department of History, did journalism internships at Medyascope.tv and Thomson Reuters News Agency during her university years, and worked as a copywriter for various blogs. He has been working in the field of strategic content production and copywriting as one of the editors of Fabrika Creative since December 2019.

Selin Akbaş

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