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Burn Calories On The Sly With NEAT

Author : Phil Tucker

When we think of burning calories we often imagine very rigorous pursuits. Running a marathon, hitting the gym every day, lifting weights or going out for bike rides. We think of a lot of effort, of having to work out rear ends off to just lose a couple of pounds. Is this the only way to lose weight? It turns out that we all do something whose acronym is NEAT, and it allows us to burn calories without even realizing it. If we can find a way to increase our NEAT, we can burn even more calories without realizing it. So in today's article we're going to take a look at NEAT, find out what it is, and what you can do to increase it without hitting the gym.

First, let's break the acronym apart. NEAT stands for Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis, which is a big and complicated way of saying that your body burns calories even when it is not engaged in activity. How does it do this? Well, first we can think of all the regular movement you do just getting through your day. Standing up, walking around, picking things up, carrying things. All of these are in effect low-grade forms of exercise. Every movement takes energy, and all that moving adds up.

Second, your body needs calories just to continue living. If you were to lie all day in bed and never even move a muscle, you would still burn calories as your body seeks to keep your brain going, your heart beating, your body warm, all the regular systematic things that we have to do to stay alive. These also burn calories, and the sum total at the end of the day contributes to your NEAT value.

So how can we take this ongoing burn and find a way to increase it? Quite simply, try to be a little more active throughout your day. If you get up every half hour and go for a five minute walk, or work a little standing up, or skip the car and walk to the local coffee shop, you'll end up burning more calories which over time will amount to pounds lost without your ever actually having to go to the gym. You simply need to decide to be a more active person, and the calories will slowly burn themselves off as a result of your activity.

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Tags:   diet, fitness, health, weight loss, exercise

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Submitted : 2011-08-02    Word Count : 412    Times Viewed: 360