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Why diet for weight loss is more effective than exercise for obesity – New scientific evidence.

Diet for weight loss may be more important than exercise for long-term weight control, new scientific evidence suggests. According to health expert and evolutionary anthropologist, Herman Pontzer, exercise may not be effective enough for fat burning, especially in the long run. Here are some facts worth knowing about this topic that might be useful to you.

Good reasons for a healthy diet to lose weight

diet to lose weight in combination with sports exercises at home

The professor claims exercise is pointless when it comes to weight loss. Moreover, the metabolism might compensate for exercising to burn calories by reducing other activities. This could explain why exercise is good for health but bad for weight loss, according to the health expert. Contrary to decades of popular advice, exercise may not be an effective strategy for weight loss, Dr. Pontzer, contends. His current research suggests that more exercise doesn’t necessarily help you burn more calories because the body finds sneaky ways to adapt. It does so by reducing energy expenditure elsewhere.

the fight against obesity despite sport ineffective with poor metabolism

What makes exercise ineffective for weight loss, however, could explain why it’s so good for health. According to Pontzer, exercising could divert excess energy away from potentially harmful bodily processes such as inflammation and stress. Accordingly, exercise doesn’t change how many calories you consume, but how you consume them. So diet for weight loss and exercise are two different tools for two different purposes. The former is more for weight loss, while the latter is the tool for everything else.

The science behind the theory

health expert herman pontzer with book on diet to lose weight

The new research suggests that people cannot exceed their metabolic budget. Weight loss training is based on the assumption that you can burn calories at a constant rate. According to this theory, if walking one mile burns 50 calories, then walking 100 miles (about 161 kilometers) over the course of a month would burn 5,000 calories. In theory, this could help you use more energy, as well as cause your body to dip into stored energy by burning fat. However, this theory falls apart in light of new data Pontzer has gleaned from his research. He studied a group of indigenous Tanzanians called the Hadza. As part of a traditional hunter-gatherer lifestyle, they typically walk miles each day.

honey as a traditional food among the hadza people in tanzania


The professor and his team were stunned to find that the subjects burned only slightly more calories each day than the average sedentary American adult. This is far less than expected based on their very high activity levels. This observation suggests that the equation of exercise and metabolism is more of a curve, meaning that the more you exercise, the more carefully your body allocates energy.

This is why energy expenditure, regardless of weight loss, is quite important

the right diet through high protein drink after workout

According to Pontzer’s data from Hadza and other groups, the body wants to maintain the same caloric budget whether you’re training for a marathon or lying on the couch. This is what he calls “the restricted energy frame.” However, while this could inhibit fat burning, it may make it clear why exercise is so good for your health. After weeks or months of exercise, the body begins to reallocate calories from other activities to compensate, Pontzer’s evidence suggests. He suspects this includes activities that do more harm than good.

effective weight loss by burning calories while exercising


The immune system, for example, is important in keeping you alive, but can cause damage if it is overactive. This can lead to problems ranging from allergies to autoimmune diseases. The so-called restricted energy framework suggests that exercise helps the body use excess energy to keep the immune system, as well as stress responses, more balanced. Pontzer argues that even most people’s understanding of ideal caloric intake is wrong. “Nine-year-olds burn 2,000 calories a day, while adults burn more like 3,000,” he writes. In his model of restricted daily energy expenditure, the body adjusts how it consumes the limited number of calories based on lifestyle.

Here’s how a balanced diet can help you lose weight

healthy smoothie in the morning as part of a healthy diet to lose weight

Pontzer made a surprising realization: “You’re not in control of your metabolism,” he said. That’s why the expert believes the only way to lose weight effectively is to eat for weight loss. The Hadza tribe’s balanced, seasonal omnivorous menu includes carbohydrates from grains, starches from tubers and sugars from honey. This is a good example of such a diet. Herman Pontzer recommends eating meals high in protein and fiber, which can be filling and also keep you full longer. The next step in his research is to test how this theory works. This will show whether researchers can actually measure how exercise affects every system and cell in the body beyond fat and muscle.

how a balanced and healthy diet helps to lose weight or fight obesity

If proven, the theory could also help explain why modern, sedentary lifestyles and processed foods are bad for health. In addition, it would help people take the right countermeasures for obesity. Many take it for granted that chronic disease is part of being human, but humans in the Western world are actually pretty weird, Pontzer said. He thinks all could learn a lot more from other cultures about how the human body works.