High intensity workout can help curb appetite

5 Jul 2013, 17:26
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It seems to be a common sense that the more physical exertion you exercise and more energy spend, the more hungry you will become.


A new study published in the International Journal of Obesity overturns this notion saying that people may experience reduced appetite after high intensity workout session.


The new unusual way to curb appetite was tested by a graduate student at the University of Western Australia and his colleagues, co-authors of the study.


Previously, some studies suggested that high intensity workout and maximal muscle efforts result in appetite suppression by decreasing levels of hunger controlling hormones that are responsible for regulation of satiation and hunger.


17 slightly overweight men who volunteered in the study performed four half an hour workout sessions in one of which they mostly rested while during the rest three exercised including cycling and other activities at medium, high, and very high intensity.


After each session the participants drank a liquid meal of 267 calories. Then, a little over an hour later, the researchers offered the participants oatmeal and told them to eat until they were "comfortably full."


The moderate exercise involved continuous cycling, while the more intense workouts alternated between short bursts of speed and longer stretches of pedalling at a lower speed.


The men ate fewer calories after the high and very high intensity workouts compared to the times when they rested. They also ate less after the very high intensity workout than after the moderate exercise, while the difference between the high intensity workout and the moderate workout was small enough that it could have occurred by chance.


After the sessions, the men ate 764 calories after resting, 710 calories after the moderate exercise, 621 calories after the high intensity workout and 594 calories after the very high intensity workout.


The men also reported eating fewer calories on the day following the highest intensity workout than they did on the days following the other exercise sessions.


They ate 2,000 calories during the day following the very high intensity workout, while they ate a little more than 2,300 calories during the day after the moderate exercise and more than 2,600 during the day following the resting session.


David Stensel, a researcher at Loughborough University in the UK who has studied exercise's effect on food intake and didn't find such consequence of high intensity workouts, cautioned that this was a small study that needs to be repeated before any conclusions can be drawn.


While the study shows promising cuts in calorie intake in the short-term, it's unclear whether high intensity exercise can affect longer term weight loss.


"One thing that's different is they've done this in an overweight or obese population. Most of the research that's been done is in normal weight or healthy weight individuals. This study provides some promising preliminary support for this notion, but further research is needed to investigate this in a longer-term study," he concluded.

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