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N.E.A.T. – Nonexercise Activity Thermogensis

According to a recent article by Joy Keller and Judy Meyer published in the May 2015 issue of the IDEA Fitness Journal, James A. Levine, MD, PhD, endocrinology fellow at the Mayo Clinic is encouraging people to incorporate N.E.A.T (nonexercise activity thermogenesis aka incidental movements) back into their lives. Activities such as walking to and from work, typing, dancing, gardening, pacing while chatting on the phone and even toe tapping or fidgeting, are considered incidental movements which expend energy throughout the day in addition to our regimented exercise programs.

Some of the statistics recently shared in the article mentioned above in the May 2015 issue of the IDEA Fitness Journal are as follows:

– In one study, “individuals who are obese tend to sit for 2.5 hours more per day than their lean sedentary counterparts.” This study further suggests that, “if obese individuals were to adopt more NEAT-type movements, then they could potentially expend an additional 350 calories per day”. *This is approximately ten pounds a year!

– “A chair bound office worker may expend 300 NEAT calories, whereas a cashier expends approximately 1400 NEAT calories.”

– “Daily energy expenditure for adults of similar size varies by as much as 2000kcal/day based in part on how much incidental movement occurs.”

Additionally reported in the May 2015 issue IDEA Fitness Journal in a research article written by Troy Purdom, MS and Len Kravitz, PhD, there are six key factors that predict weight gain as follows:

– “Eating High-Calorie Foods” regularly such as French fries, potato chips, red meat, and refined grains, etc. is associated with progressive weight gain.

– “Consuming Sugar-Sweetened Beverages” because these beverages are empty calories and are “the greatest provider of kilocalories in the American diet (Dennis et al. 2009)”.

– “Too Little (or Too Much ) Sleep” – some epidemiological studies suggest “that weight gain is influenced by sleeping less than 7 hours or more than 8 hours per night (Marshall, Glozier & Grunstein 2008)”.

– “Quantity of TV Watching” – “is highly correlated with weight gain, especially in young people (Chapman et al. 2012).”

– “Alcohol Overconsumption”- we should all know that alcohol is 7kcal per gram, provides little nutritional value and “energy consumption from alcohol augments overall daily calorie intake” among many other possible maladies.

– “Inactivity” – researchers indicate that “older Amish people who walk an average of 18,000 (men) and 14,000 (women) steps a day have very low rates of obesity (Gorden-Larsen et al 2009).

Consequently, these six factors are known to cause or contribute to weight gain or prohibit weight loss. Therefore, making a few changes to your current lifestyle by watching less television, getting the right amount of sleep, consuming alcohol in moderation, exercising regularly, avoiding high-sugar beverages and high caloric content foods, plus moving as often as possible throughout your day increasing your nonexercise activity, may decrease your daily caloric intake and increase your daily caloric expenditure–a dynamite combination, while improving your fitness level and overall health.

*IDEA Health & Fitness Association (www.ideafit.com) is a global premier health and fitness association that is dedicated to the education of fitness professionals. I utilize their journals, among many other excellent health and fitness resources, on a consistent basis, to provide you with the most up-to-date, cutting edge research and information in the fitness industry.

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