“Exercise alone is not enough to lose weight because our bodies reach a plateau where working out more does not necessarily burn extra calories, researchers have found.”

A new study in the journal Cell Biology makes an argument, that there might be limits on how much exercise is able to increase energy expenditure. The possible implications are, that factoring in physical activity to determine caloric needs may be more complex than previously thought. The overarching finding in this study was that a difference in energy expenditure exists between the sedentary and moderately active. However, past moderate activity levels, the change in energy expenditure does not vary. They found this by measuring activity levels and energy expenditure of 332 adults in Africa and North America. The researchers concluded that increasing physical activity beyond moderate levels does not correlate with higher energy expenditures.   Pontzer, of City University of New York, suggests that physical activity past a certain point leads to adaptations of the body which act to constrain total energy expenditure. The researchers also go on to make an extremely important point. Exercise is vital for health of the mind and body, there is quite a bit of evidence for this, and that message does not change. “What our work adds is that we also need to focus on diet, particularly when it comes to managing our weight and preventing or reversing unhealthy weight gain.”

“In light of their findings, the authors suggest revision of World Health Organization guidance on how to prevent weight gain and obesity, which suggests 150 minutes of activity a week for adults (although it also includes dietary advice). They say it should “better reflect the constrained nature of total energy expenditure and the complex effects on physical activity on metabolic physiology.””

Be sure to read more. The full article briefly discusses other literature on the topic.

Exercise Alone Won't Cause Weight Loss, Study Shows

Source:  theguardian