Tuesday, 10 September 2013

Want to Reduce Your Appetite? This May Be the Key...

Keeping your appetite under control is a key component of weight loss and maintaining a healthy weight over your lifetime. We all have different strategies to help us manage our appetites in order to prevent overeating or making poor decisions about the foods we choose. Managing stress, getting adequate sleep and having a good exercise regimen are all methods we employ to help us keep our appetites regulated. However, recent research has revealed that the type of exercise can make more of a difference than you think.

A recent study out of the University of Western Australia found that high-intensity exercises may suppress appetite briefly afterward. The team conducting the research discovered that overweight, sedentary men (having a body mass index, or BMI, of 25-29.9) consumed almost two-hundred fewer calories after performing a vigorous exercise routine than after a period of rest.

Previous research that looked at high-intensity exercise and its effects on the body suggest that it correlates with appetite control and alterations in specific hormones that manage your feelings of hunger and your level of fullness. However, this new research that just came out discovered that those hormones are affected in different ways based on the type of workout regimen--continuous versus intermittent, and different intensity levels (moderate-, high- and very-high-intensity exercises).

The Study

The participants of the study went through four 30-minute workouts. One session was a period of rest, to serve as the control. In the other three exercise sessions, the participants worked out on a stationary bike at various levels of intensity. During one session, the men cycled continuously at a moderate level of intensity. The other two sessions involved intermittent exercise at either high-intensity or very-high-intensity where they would alternate between quick bursts of high-speed pedaling followed by longer bouts of cycling at a slower speed.

After exercising (or resting), the men consumed a 267-calorie liquid meal and were also asked to eat oatmeal until they became full. The results: the participants consumed fewer calories following the intermittent high-intensity and intermittent very-high-intensity exercise sessions versus the period of rest. Here is the calorie breakdown of what the men consumed after each session:

After a period of rest: 764 calories consumed
After continuous moderate-intensity exercise: 710 calories consumed
After intermittent high-intensity-exercise: 621 calories consumed
After intermittent very-high-intensity exercise: 594 calories consumed

And the most interesting finding? The men said they ate less the day after they performed the very-high-intensity exercise when compared to the days after their other workout sessions. This suggests that the appetite suppression experienced after the very-high-intensity workouts extends well beyond the hours immediately following the exercise and that it may even reduce your appetite the following day too.

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