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Scientific Research on Metabolism

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  • bmeadows380bmeadows380 Posts: 1,233Member Member Posts: 1,233Member Member

    Wealth.

    Food is more available and takes up a lower percentage of peoples' budgets than ever before and at the same time we do not do as much manual labor as past generations due to the Industrial Revolution and technology.

    This is exactly what I can't get my mom to understand when she says she can't understand why she and Dad are heavy. But she cooks meals the way she was taught by her mother, who cooks the way she was taught by her mother, and so on in a family that lived on a farm for generations. Back when my grandparents were young, living in a rural area, much of day to day life was taken up with exertion - washing clothes with a tub and board, or even using the old style washing machines that required manually turning the wringer, making butter with a churn, maintaining a huge garden, harvesting, keeping the animals, etc. They worked heavy, physical jobs from sun up to sundown most of the year.

    So having hearty meals made with full fat butter or lard, heavy on calorie dense bread, and even a homemade dessert in the evening wasn't as much an issue when you're doing hard labor all day long and actually need those calories. However, in today's life where we have much more leisure time, that kind of diet is no longer needed. However, my mother still cooks like she's still on the farm!

    But my mom is like so many others who over estimate how much activity she gets and severely under-estimates how much she's eating - especially the latter part. She'll make spaghetti with meat sauce and easily consume 3 servings without batting an eye, then have 2 or 3 slices of pepperidge farm cheesy garlic bread, and that's after having a breakfast of an egg, 3 or 4 bacon slices, 2 or 3 biscuits that are easily 200 calories a piece, and gravy and lunch after that.

    I can see easily demonstrated to me what happens when someone eats a certain amount of calories while being very active, then continues to eat the same amount of calories while becoming less active in my dad; he's easily gained 50 to 75 lbs in the last 8 years doing that exact thing.
  • MT1134MT1134 Posts: 101Member Member Posts: 101Member Member
    CSARdiver wrote: »
    This would be one of the reasons I left anthropology/sociology for a field reliant upon objective evidence.

    Q: You claim that exercising more won’t increase how many calories I burn. How is that possible?

    A: The number of calories you burn per day stays pretty consistent regardless of activity level; the average adult over age 50 burns about 2,500 calories a day, depending primarily on body size. That’s your daily calorie budget. When you exercise more, your body simply lowers the number of calories it burns performing other functions, such as inflammation or hormone production. So the number of calories you burn per day — your metabolism — remains constant, whether you work out or not.

    He starts out correct – metabolism is primarily based upon mass, but your body does not lower the number of calories it burns performing other functions. Hormone production and inflammation occurs as a result of various stressors and does not hold a causational relationship to metabolism. He’s conflating basal metabolic rate with exercise.

    *You're actually incorrect. Popular opinion and science alike did at one time believe that as long as we continue to move then we continue to burn calories (additive energy model-infinite energy) but that's been disproven, we've come to now learn that the body doesn't burn an infinite amount of calories and actually has a limit on how much we can use in a given period of time (constrained energy model-finite amounts of energy). Nothing about the body is independent. Everything effects everything. The study has a bias and is incomplete in representation but that's not wrong.

    Q: Yet exercise is linked to weight loss. If I’m not burning calories, how am I losing weight?

    A: When people exercise, inflammation levels go down. That’s because your body is spending your energy budget on exercise and not on creating chronic inflammation. Think of inflammation as a luxury — it’s what your body will do with extra calories if you have them. And inflammation contributes to most of the diseases of aging.

    *I'm not entirely sure what was meant here but most exercise causes inflammation. It's a form of stress. Inflammation is a direct response to stress and injury.

    There is no objective evidence supporting this.

    Q: Extreme diets (The Biggest Loser type) can lower metabolism. If a diet can lower metabolism, why can’t we increase it?

    A: From an evolutionary standpoint, it makes sense that we can turn our metabolism down, because that preserves our life in times of famine. But it makes no sense to turn your metabolism up, because once you do that, you need more food, and you increase your risk of starvation.

    Makes sense yes, but again, no evidence to support this.

    *Plenty of evidence. The brain is the command center that controls the function of our entire system. Therefore since the brain's first and most important job is survival, it will turn down our burn rate to preserve energy for times of crisis and stress but it wouldn't benefit from increasing the burn rate over long periods of time. The brain doesn't know the difference between perceived threat or real so it's not like it recognizes exercise over running from a bear trying to eat you.

    Q: Superathletes such as swimmer Michael Phelps eat and burn tons of calories. They’ve turned up their metabolisms, right?

    A: No. If you ramp up your training to an astronomical level, you can boost your energy burn for a bit, but even elite athletes settle back into the same range. Even Phelps.

    Again – conflating and confusing basal metabolic rate with exercise.

    *It's called homeostasis. There's plenty of evidence to support these claims.
  • bmeadows380bmeadows380 Posts: 1,233Member Member Posts: 1,233Member Member
    Aaron_K123 wrote: »
    Full disclosure I haven't read the article or the study. That said going to an anthropologist for "scientific research on metabolism" is like going to your dentist if you break your leg.

    Sure...dentistry is a legitimate field full of intelligent dedicated people...but why are you there with a broken leg?

    like back in the day where you went to the local barber for a haircut, shave, and to have your teeth pulled, bullets removed, wounds stitched up, etc? :wink:
  • FuzzipegFuzzipeg Posts: 1,875Member Member Posts: 1,875Member Member
    I've been catching up on my New Scientist articles in the last couple of days. Interestingly, in one recent magazine it was said were we all to partake in 2 hours serious exercise a day similar to that our ancient ancestors would have put in to achieving their diet, some hunting others digging roots and other vegetative foods our health would be vastly improved. it seems the system was created to work this way and functions differently to how ours do today. Like our ancestors we would be freed from the modern health issues and our dietary requirements would not be as high calorifically as it is assumed it should be.
  • jlklemjlklem Posts: 253Member Member Posts: 253Member Member
    Fuzzipeg wrote: »
    I've been catching up on my New Scientist articles in the last couple of days. Interestingly, in one recent magazine it was said were we all to partake in 2 hours serious exercise a day similar to that our ancient ancestors would have put in to achieving their diet, some hunting others digging roots and other vegetative foods our health would be vastly improved. it seems the system was created to work this way and functions differently to how ours do today. Like our ancestors we would be freed from the modern health issues and our dietary requirements would not be as high calorifically as it is assumed it should be.

    This is very interesting. Do you have the link?

    I am a serious cyclist and average around 2 hours a day of exercise all year. I’m 49 years old and I am in the best shape of my life, both cognitively and physically. It’s can be a challenge to balance it all but with some weekly planning and no TV, a 10 minute walk to work, it’s not to bad. In the end, so far, my quality of life is high.

    John
  • lynn_glenmontlynn_glenmont Posts: 7,041Member Member Posts: 7,041Member Member
    Aaron_K123 wrote: »
    Full disclosure I haven't read the article or the study. That said going to an anthropologist for "scientific research on metabolism" is like going to your dentist if you break your leg.

    Sure...dentistry is a legitimate field full of intelligent dedicated people...but why are you there with a broken leg?

    Because it's 1680 and I didn't want to go the barber?

    ETA: Whoops, I see somebody beat me to the concept, if not the actual joke.
    edited June 19
  • FuzzipegFuzzipeg Posts: 1,875Member Member Posts: 1,875Member Member
    I don't have a link - its in a hard copy I've been reading, hope this information can help you track it down. Date of the magazine, New Scientist,15th June 2019, page 34, Under the title, "Step on it". This refers to the work of Herman Pontzer, Associate professor of evolutionary anthropology at Duke University, North Carolina.

    To highlight one or two of the quotes, "being active doesn't change the number of calories you spend each day, it changes how you spend them". "in the modern world we rarely reach the activity levels of hunter-gatherers". Above a list of steps. How many steps? The optimum amount of exercise you should get each say is equivalent to about 15000 steps, taken at a brisk walk or faster. Steps that fall below this "moderate-and -vigorous" activity level will count for less. pardon me if I do not list the rest.


    Beg pardon for delay in reply, I'm in the UK and have been minding ggs.
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