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Tuesday, September 25, 2007

To Exercise or not To Exercise

I just read the most wonderful article in THE WALL STREET JOURNAL today.

Gary Taubes has written an article in New York Magazine that says most studies on the link between swimming laps and losing weight demonstrate little except that exercising makes us hungry and may even lead to weight gain even though it does have many health benefits.

He said that until the 1960's most people dismissed the idea that exercise could help shed pounds because light exercise burns so few calories and vigorous workouts stoke hearty appetites. Jean Mayer claimed there was a link between sedentary lifestyles and being overweight. He promoted his message like a moral crusade the the media jumped on the bandwagon.

Mr. Taubes who was criticized in 2002 for an article on low-carbohydrate diets suggests that what determines how fat or lean a person is has more to do with the body's internal programming. He sees lean people as those whose bodies are programmed to send the calories they consume to the muscles to be burned rather than to the fat tissue to be stored.

I don't know how sound his theory is, but I like it. Now maybe I can guiltlessly sleep a little later in the morning instead of running to the gym or pool.

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