If there is no need to exercise to lose weight….



  1. The fact that exercise had no effect over diet neglected
  2. The energy consumed by exercise will always come back
  3. It's possible to lose weight only by eating


"Imagine you’re invited to a celebratory dinner….
You might try to eat less over the course of the day-maybe even skip lunch, or breakfast and lunch. You might go to the gym for a particularly vigorous workout, or go for a longer run or swim than usual, to work up an appetite.

Now let’s think about this for a moment. The instructions that we’re constantly being given to lose weight-eat less (decrease the calories we take in) and exercise more (increase the calories we expend) -are the very same things we’ll do if our purpose is to make ourselves hungry, to build up an appetite, to eat more.

Now the existence of an obesity epidemic coincident with half a century of advice to eat less and exercise more begins to look less paradoxical. (p.40)

Certainly in the United States, where the obesity epidemic has coincided with what we might call an epidemic of leisure-time physical activity, of health clubs and innovative means of expending energy, virtually all of which were either invented or radically redesigned since the obesity epidemic began." (P.42)

(Citation from “Why We Get Fat?” by Gary Taubes)

1. The fact that exercise had no effect over diet has been neglected

The ubiquitous faith in the belief that the more calories we expend, the less we’ll weigh is based ultimately on one observation and one assumption. The observation is that people who are lean tend to be more physically active than those of us who aren't. This is undisputed. Marathon runners as a rule are not overweight or obese….

But this observation tells us nothing about whether runners would be fatter if they didn't run or if the pursuit of distance running as a full-time hobby will turn a fat man or Woman into a lean marathoner. (P.46)

■(One study was published in 2006)  Paul Williams (a statistics expert at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory) and Peter Wood (a Stanford University researcher) collected detailed information on almost thirteen thousand habitual runners and then compared the weekly mileage of these runners with how much they weighed from year to year.
Those who ran the most tended to weigh the least, but all these runners tended to get fatter with each passing year, even those who ran more than forty miles a week-eight miles a day, say, five days a week. (P.45)

■In 1977, for instance, in the midst of the exercise explosion, the National Institutes of Health hosted its second ever conference on obesity and weight control, and the assembled experts concluded that "the importance of exercise in weight control is less than might be believed, because increases in energy expenditure due to exercise also tend to increase food consumption, and it is not possible to predict whether the increased caloric output will be outweighed by the greater food intake." (P.52)

■From the late 1970s onward, the primary factor fueling the belief that we can maintain or lose weight through exercise seemed to be the researchers' desire to believe it was true and their reluctance to acknowledge otherwise publicly. (P.53)

As for the researchers themselves, they invariably found a way to write their articles and reviews that allowed them to continue to promote exercise and physical activity, regardless of what the evidence actually showed.

One common method was (and still is) to discuss only the results that seem to support the belief that physical activity and energy expenditure can determine how fat we are, while simply ignoring the evidence that refutes the notion, even if the latter is in much more plentiful supply. (P.54)

In August 2007, the American Heart Association (AHA) and American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) published joint guidelines on physical activity and health. Thirty minutes of moderately vigorous physical activity, they said, five days a week, was necessary to "maintain and promote health.”

But when it came to the question of how exercising affects our getting fat or staying lean, these experts could only say:
"It is reasonable to assume that persons with relatively high daily energy expenditures would be less likely to gain weight over time, compared with those who have low energy expenditures. So far, data to support this hypothesis are not particularly compelling." (PP.43-44)


The relationship between exercise and weight is “more complex” than they might otherwise have imagined. (P.45) 

Maybe it’s something other than the calories we consume and expend that determines whether we get fat." (P.46)

(Citation from “Why We Get Fat?” by Gary Taubes)

2. The energy consumed by exercise will always come back

Generally, we tend to think that an intake of 100kcal and a consumption of 100kcal are equal. However, I believe this is a big mistake.
Though energy is temporally consumed by exercise, it will basically come back. Of course, if you do exercise without eating anything, you will lose weight but it’s not a healthy way of getting slim.

When we move our muscles, energy and nutrition stored in the cell will be consumed. Then the body will increase absorption rate, inprove blood circulation and deliver nutrition and oxygen to each cell in order to cover the loss.

As a result, there will be a greater appetite. Though I’m not a specialist, this is what we empirically feel.

Higher absorption rate might be difficult to understand but think of this, when somebody drinks alcohol on an empty stomach or drinks alcohol after exercising which will make them more intoxicated or a person turns redder than usual.

Also, the tendency to crave sweets after exercising is a natural mechanism of the body to compensate for reduced glycogen in muscle.

"The very notion that expending more energy than we take in-eating less and exercising more-can cure us of our weight problem, make us permanently leaner and lighter, is based on yet another assumption about the laws of thermodynamics that happens to be incorrect.
The assumption is that the energy we consume and the energy we expend have little influence on each other, that we can consciously change one and it will have no consequence on the other, and vice versa. (P.77)

Intuitively we know this isn't true.
People who semi-starve themselves, or who are semi-starved during wars, famines, or scientific experiments, are not only hungry all the time but lethargic, and they expend less energy. And increasing physical activity does increase hunger; exercise does work up an appetite. (PP.77-78)

In short, the energy we consume and the energy we expend are dependent on each other.
Mathematicians would say they are dependent variables, not independent variables, as they have typically been treated. Change one, and the other changes to compensate. Anyone who argues differently is treating an extraordinarily complex living organism as though it were a simple mechanical device. (P.78)

In 2007, Jeffrey Flier, dean of Harvard Medical School and his wife and colleague in obesity research, Terry Maratos-Flier, published an article in Scientific American called “What Fuels Fat.”
In it, they described the intimate link between appetite and energy expenditure, making clear that they are not simply variables that an individual can consciously decide to change with the only effect being that his or her fat tissue will get smaller or larger to compensate." (P78)

(Citation from “Why We Get Fat?” by Gary Taubes)

3. It’s possible to lose weight only by eating

Light exercise such as walking and running is necessary for your health but it’s not indispensable for getting slim. That is to say, you can lose weight even while continuing to eat regularly.

"When Russell Wilder, an obesity and diabetes specialist at the Mayo Clinic, lectured on obesity in 1932, he said his fat patients lost more weight with bed rest, 'while unusually strenuous physical exercise slows the rate of loss.' 'The patient reasons quite correctly,' Wilder said, 'that the more exercise he takes the more fat should be burned and that loss of weight should be in proportion and he is discouraged to find that the scales reveal no progress.' " (P47)

(Citation from “Why We Get Fat?” by Gary Taubes)


■There is a book about this written by a Japanese sports specialist.

“Sports coach declares. For dieting, exercise should be 10% and meal should be 90%”
by Takuro Mori

After this statement, “How to get slim with 100% meal” was published. Mr. Mori worked in a fitness club for 5 years and though he is a sports coach, he says it’s impossible to lose weight only with exercise.

“As a sports instructor, I’ve seen hundreds and thousands of clients. However, what I saw there were long-time club clients who didn't get slim and moreover, staff who didn't get slim despite the fact that they work in a sports club.

The main work of dieting is the improvement of meal and mentality to support it. Regarding exercise, I believe its weight is very small, so if someone can work out with meal improvement and improved mentality, large results can be obtained even if exercise coaching is omitted… It is also true that, with exaggerated diet product ads, I believed somehow that effective exercise will make anyone slim.

It’s an advertisement so naturally going to be exaggerated in order to appeal. But it’s manipulating people’s general perception.”

(Citation from “For dieting, exercise should be 10% and meal should be 90%” by Takuro Mori)

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2018.02.01 For dieting, meal improvement rather than exercise