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We are programmed to be lazy

https://theconversation.com/we-are-programmed-to-be-lazy-128893

theconversation.com

We are programmed to be lazy
Would you rather lounge in front of your TV than sweat in the gym? Your distant ancestors may well be (a little) responsible for your lack of motivation.

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The battle between reason and emotions

To understand the conflict between our good intentions and our contrary impulses, we can look at the dual process model. Our behavior are divided into two categories:

  • The ra...

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Sedentary lifestyle and evolution

The attraction toward sedentary can be viewed in light of evolution. When it was challenging to gain access to food, minimizing effort allowed for the saving of energy that was cru...

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Moving toward an active lifestyle

  • The first step toward an active lifestyle is to become aware of this force that is driving us to inactivity.
  • We likely engage in physical activity only wh...

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Effects of ordinary medication

There’s emerging evidence that ordinary medications - from paracetamol to antihistamines, statins, asthma medications, and antidepressants - can change our brains. They can make us impulsive, angry, or restless, and even alter aspects of our personalities.

In most people, changes from taking medicine are extremely subtle. But in some, they can also be dramatic.

The crisis of over-medication

  • The US buys an equivalent of 298 paracetamol tablets per person every year.
  • The average American consumes $1,200 worth of prescription medications over the same period.
  • In the UK, one in 10 people over the age of 65 takes eight medications every week.

Statins and personality changes 

  • People with lower cholesterol levels are more likely to die violent deaths.
  • If you put primates on a low-cholesterol diet, they become more aggressive. Lowering animals’ cholesterol seems to affect their levels of serotonin. Even fruit flies start fighting if you interfere with their serotonin levels.
  • Studies have linked serotonin levels in people to violence, impulsivity, suicide, and murder.
  • In a randomized controlled trial, statins were found to increase aggression in post-menopausal women though, oddly, not in men. Giving statins to Nile tilapia made them more confrontational and altered the levels of serotonin in their brains.

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Exercise Defined

Exercise is a  movement of the body to enhance physical fitness. 

Most people know that exercise is important for the physical development of the self, yet a majority of them are skipping exercise often.

Decrease in Human Strength

Historic evidence suggests that for many thousands of years, human beings were more active and stronger than today. 

The early humans had increased movement and activity, like going for long and tiring hunts, walking long distances that took weeks, making the prehistoric humans fitter than the best athletes today.

Technology as the Culprit

Technological breakthroughs have reduced our activity to a great extent ( vacuum cleaners, washer-dryers, self-cleaning ovens, and even cars).

The rise of the internet gave us a whole lot of technology, curbing our need to move even more.

Calories burned every day

The calories we burn every day include not only movement but all the energy needed to run the thousands of functions that keep us alive. 

Exercise and health

Exercise is like a wonder drug for many health outcomes: reducing blood pressure, reduces the risk of diabetes of heart diseases and slows developing cognitive impairment from Alzheimer's and dementia. 

But as for losing weight, it helps more in weight maintenance than in losing the actual weight.

Human energy balance

Exercise alone has a modest contribution to weight loss. But when you alter one component, cutting the number of calories you eat in a day to lose weight, doing more exercise than usual, this sets off a cascade of changes in the body that affect how many calories you use up and, in turn, your bodyweight.