According to a new study published recently from the University of Copenhagen, less may be best when it comes to weight loss. Researchers studied two groups of individuals hoping to lose weight. The first group exercised daily for thirty minutes. The second group worked out for one hour. The result? Those who sweat for thirty minutes lost more weight (two pounds over a three month period) than those exercising for twice the amount of time. The individuals who sweat for sixty minutes did burn more calories, but researchers speculated that their increased appetite may have countered their weight loss. They also reasoned that the 30 minute exercisers had additional energy to do other activities, like walking up stairs instead of taking the elevator, for the rest of the day.
“The take-home message is that in order to get the benefit of exercise on weight loss, you don’t have to go to extremes,” says Dr. Donald Hensrud, a weight-managament specialist at the Mayo Clinic.