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Diet, Not Exercise, Key to Obesity, Scientists Find

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Posted on Jul 26, 2012
Still from Pixar's "Wall-E"

Using a Tanzanian tribe as a stand-in for ancient humans, an international group of scientists determined that the hunter-gatherers burned calories no better than we fat, slobby Westerners, when corrected for size. This suggests that overeating is more to blame for obesity than the modern sedentary lifestyle.

Of course, no doctor worth his or her salt will tell you to lay off the exercise. Many studies have shown the short- and long-term benefits of working out.

With obesity and sub-obese fattiness continuing to rise, we’d best attack this problem from all angles lest we end up like the humans in “Wall-E.”

—Posted by Peter Z. Scheer.

BBC:

Dr Herman Pontzer of the department of anthropology at Hunter College, New York, said everyone had assumed that hunter gatherers would burn hundreds more calories a day than adults in the US and Europe.

The data came as a surprise, he said, highlighting the complexity of energy expenditure.

But he stressed that physical exercise is nonetheless important for maintaining good health.

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