Posts Tagged ‘physical activity’

Obesity Causes: Thoughts on Food and Activity

October 19, 2022 — The second day of the epic meeting on obesity causes at the Royal Society in London came round to the subject that preoccupies almost everyone – food and physical activity. One thing is certain. This is a pair of subjects that evokes strong passions, but the strength of the data often does not match the […]

Stepping Up Your Steps: Is More Really Better?

October 12, 2022 — In a typical day, most people really don’t move around that much. The simplest way of quantifying this is by counting steps and the average for an American adult is between three and four thousand per day. The default goal for improving on this became 10,000 steps – probably because an early pedometer called the […]

Has the Pandemic Made the World Less Active?

September 27, 2022 — We’re not quite done with COVID-19 – roughly 400 people are still dying daily from it in the U.S. But some of our leaders are saying the pandemic is over. Well, we’ll leave that debate to the poli-med pundits. However it’s worth noting that it looks like we’re not on track to go back to […]

A Boom in Fitness Trackers, a Bust in Fitness

May 28, 2022 — Worldwide sales of fitness trackers increased from US$14 billion in 2017 to over $36 billion in 2020. The skyrocketing success of these gadgets suggests that more people than ever see some value in keeping tabs on the number of steps they take, flights of stairs they climb, time they spend sitting, and calories they burn. […]

Two Reasons for Failure to Prevent the Rise of Obesity

January 29, 2022 — For decades now, public health figures have been talking about an urgent need to prevent and reverse the rise of obesity. A number of U.S. presidents – notably George W. Bush and Barack Obama – have embraced this goal. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has a whole division devoted to this goal. […]

Rethinking a Study of the Biggest Loser

December 21, 2021 — If nothing else, we have learned in recent years that it is possible to rationalize anything. In the pandemic and in politics, we see people taking a set of facts and coming up with wildly different interpretations. Likewise in science, we have to think hard about how to make sense of new findings. With new […]

Does Grandparenting Explain Physical Activity Benefits?

December 1, 2021 — Let’s start with a disclosure of vested interests. It’s entirely possible that we hold strong biases about grandparenting and physical activity, since we engage in both with enthusiasm. Nonetheless, it is also objectively true that the active grandparent hypothesis is receiving considerable attention. A new article in PNAS by Daniel Lieberman and colleagues is prompting […]

Forget Weight? Focus on It? Or Meet in the Middle?

September 21, 2021 — To say that our culture obsesses about weight and body image is possibly an understatement. Athleisure togs serve to emphasize it. People dress to look like they’re going for a run, to the gym, or a yoga class. And yet, this obsession divides us. Two new publications today offer a sharp contrast on this subject. […]

Setting the Bar Too High at 10,000 Steps Daily?

September 13, 2021 — We’ve known all along that 10,000 steps per day is a goal for physical activity that came to us out of thin air. People latched on to it because it was a nice, round number. It was memorable. But the fact is that it’s arbitrary. In fact, evidence now tells us that one size does […]

Exercise: Energy In, Energy Out, Energy Sideways

August 30, 2021 — Exercise for weight loss is a durable concept. Some advocates even push for food labels to describe the exercise necessary to burn calories in a food serving. But the premise for this is false. A new study in Current Biology explains the problem better than ever before. It turns out that when a person does […]