Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis (NEAT)

By Laura Moncur @ 5:00 pm — Filed under:

A lot of research is being done on something called Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis, or NEAT. It is being performed by a doctor, James A. Levine, M.D. You can see the Mayo Clinic abstracts here:

The idea is that it is possible to burn a lot of calories over the day just by fidgeting. Being unable to sit still is actually a good thing when it comes to staying thin. His philosophy is that moving around throughout your day is a way to keep healthy and strong. He hasn’t proved it yet, but he is working on it right now with research.

Until then, how can we fidget productively?

  • Every few minutes get up from your desk and walk around the office. Get a glass of water, go to the bathroom or even just stand up and jog in place. If you are tied to your desk, you can still just stand up and stretch.

  • Set up an elevated desk in which you can work by sitting or standing.

  • We worry so much about efficiency. Stop it. If it takes you three trips to the counter to get what you need, that’s actually better than getting it all in one trip.

  • Bounce your leg while you’re sitting. Lift your arms over your head and stretch every few minutes. Roll your shoulders. Any activity burns a few calories. Take the times when your computer is loading a page, compiling a program or saving a document to fidget.

I’m sure Dr. Levine will have an entire program to teach you how to fidget productively and burn calories while you work. Until then, just remember to keep moving.


3 Responses to “Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis (NEAT)”

  1. www.iportion.com Says:

    Sounds neat. I’ve always fidgeted and paced and it didn’t help burn enough calories because I was over eating so much. I did gain more when I paced less but I also ate more.

  2. aimee Says:

    It’s actually cool for someone like me who doesn’t like excersing. Fidge, but make sure you are not reaching for a brownie or sugar cookies.

  3. Tom Says:

    I agree with the “get up and walk around” suggestion, I cant stand being pinned to a chair all day. It looks a little silly at times but there are a good deal of exercises you can do quickly in your office or cube at work.

Leave a Reply


Powered by WordPress
(c) 2004-2017 Starling Fitness / Michael and Laura Moncur