Exercise is not the answer to weight loss?
If exercise is not the answer to weight loss, what is it? Weight management is a matter of concern for many in our society, 63% precisely according to Sydney Morning Herald (http://www.smh.com.au/lifestyle/health-and-wellbeing/fitness/why-is-exercise-useless-for-weight-loss-20170223-gujmzc.html). At the same time, the article claimed that ‘exercise is useless for weight loss’. Surprise to anyone? Well, we have seen so many who have lost it and put back more after.
So if this simple primary school math, we burn more than we eat, doesn’t work, anything else does? It does not take much to come up with a list of ‘quick fixes’ that have marketed as cure (including exercise), but rarely work: diet, supplements, and many more peculiar ones.
Obesity is a lifestyle condition
Obesity is classified as a ‘lifestyle condition’ in public health, together with many other conditions such as cancers, cardio-vascular diseases, diabetes and arthritis just to name a few. If the conditions are caused by our modern lifestyle, it is not hard to imagine that the answers should lay at fixing the cause - lifestyle.
Fortunately we do not need to look too far. Our ancestors a couple of generations ahead of us had a significantly different lifestyle: no cars, everything was by foot, or bikes or horses if lucky; No fridges. All foods were from the markets or own fields straight to the kitchen (Walked to the market too!); Meat was only consumed on only limited and special occasions; Their diet was mainly freshly produced foods – raw and unprocessed. Ice cream or chips were certainly not part of the daily menu; Water, tea, maybe coffee were the beverages, no coca cola or red bull. The end results? They were actually healthier, both physically and mentally. (The main killers of their time were infections, but not the contemporary men made lifestyle conditions.)
Don’t get me wrong though, I am not here to suggest that we should all get rid of our cars and fridges and bring back the old farmers’ markets so that we can lose weight. I am simply suggesting there is a lot we can learn from our ancestors with regard to a healthy lifestyle: outdoor, active, diet, mentality, habits and so on. With some reflection and discipline, maybe we can use the modern facilities to our advantage when dealing with this seemly impossible chellanges of our era.
Remember, obesity is a lifestyle related condition. Unless we make some effort to change our lifestyle, it is here to stay.