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Old 12-15-2006, 09:22 PM
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Default Non exercise activity thermogenesis (NEAT)

Recently, President Wilson wrote an article on the concept of NEAT. This can be read here, NEAT.

NEAT concerns activities which are physical but fall outside of exercise such as pacing, fiddling, typing, talking, standing, tying your shoes, and other occupational activities performed at work or school. Studies indicate that NEAT may explain the majority of the difference between individuals in terms of their energy expended in a given day. In fact, it ranges from 15-50 % of total calories expended in a given day depending on whether an individual is sedentary or active.

This is a cool graph that typifies the importance of NEAT

This figure graphically compares energy expenditure of various activities relative to resting levels of energy expenditure. Some notable findings are that something as simple as chewing gum increased energy expenditure above resting levels by 20%!

So what I want to know from you guys, is what methods do you think would be effective, realistic implementations of NEAT in our daily lives, that we can all adhere too?

Here are some suggestions from the Presidents article:

Here are sample ideas of how you can enhance NEAT.

1. Instead of sitting in your office, move your computer screen and type writer up to standing level and spend the day typing while standing. All of a sudden your “desk job” becomes a standing job, and you will metabolize a substantially higher amount of calories per day. While it seems strange, I have personally seen my brother Gabriel adapt easily to this method.

2. When studying or reading a paper, try reading it while ambulating (pacing). Your energy expenditure will literally double!

3. Ignore the elevator and take the stairs. You might also not worry too much about parking right in front of the store. If there’s a parking further away, take it.

4. Chew gum!

5. When dieting be extra conscious of NEAT levels as it may be the main reason why you stop metabolizing fat when you diet.

6. Just because you can sit, does not mean that you have to sit. I notice that whenever individuals have a chance to take a load off they do. But while dieting this may not be the wise thing to do.

The amazing thing about behavior is that it is modifiable with practice and experience. If you begin to implement these activities then they will become second nature, and you will substantially notice yourself becoming leaner.

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Gabriel "Venom" Wilson, Ph.D. Nutritional Sciences
B.S. (Hons) & M.S. in Kinesiology, CSCS
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