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Walking for 15 minutes could stop chocolate cravings, scientists find

 

By Richard Alleyne, Science Correspondent

Last Updated: 2:00AM GMT 12 Nov 2008

 

For the first time, newly-published research shows that exercise may reduce food cravings.

 

The benefits of exercise in helping people manage dependencies on cigarettes and other drugs have previously been recognised.

 

Researchers at the University of Exeter have found that a walk of just fifteen minutes is enough to reduce the urge to eat chocolate.

 

Professor Adrian Taylor, who carried out the study, said: "Our ongoing work consistently shows that brief bouts of physical activity reduce cigarette cravings, but this is the first study to link exercise to reduced chocolate cravings.

 

"Neuroscientists have suggested common processes in the reward centres of the brain between drug and food addictions, and it may be that exercise effects brain chemicals that help to regulate mood and cravings.

 

"This could be good news for people who struggle to manage their cravings for sugary snacks and want to lose weight."

 

Following three days of abstinence, 25 regular chocolate eaters were asked to either complete a 15-minute brisk walk or rest, in a random order.

 

They then engaged in tasks that would normally induce chocolate cravings, including a mental challenge and opening a chocolate bar.

 

After exercise participants reported lower cravings than after rest. Cravings were not only reduced during the walk, but for at least 10 minutes afterwards.

 

Previous research has suggested that 97 per cent of women and 68 per cent of men experience food cravings.

 

Craved-for foods tend to be calorie-dense, fatty or sugary foods, with chocolate being the most commonly reported.

 

Chocolate has a number of biologically active constituents that temporarily enhance our mood with a result that eating it can become a habit, particularly when we are under stress and when it is readily available, and perhaps when we are least active.

 

"While enjoying the occasional chocolate bar is fine, in time, regular eating may lead to stronger cravings during stress and when it is readily available," said Prof Taylor.

 

"Recognising what causes us to eat high energy snacks, even if we have plans to not do so, can be helpful. Short bouts of physical activity can help to regulate how energised and pleasant we feel, and with a sedentary lifestyle we may naturally turn to mood regulating behaviours such as eating chocolate. Accumulating 30 minutes of daily physical activity, with two 15 minute brisk walks, for example, not only provides general physical and mental health benefits but also may help to regulate our energy intake. This research furthers our understanding of the complex physical, psychological and emotional relationship we have with food."

 

The research is now published online in the journal Appetite.

 

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/343959...tists-find.html

 

claprofl

 

 

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Ok so what are they trying to tell us? Walk to stop eating chocolate or stop walking?

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Wait - we should walk AND eat chocolate, rest AND eat chocolate to get the most benefits from each thing. smile

 

I'm still stocking chocolate . . . .

 

roflchocobun

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GOODMORNINGPUPPYINBOX.gif

 

Maybe just eat chocolate when you want to. smilestar

 

I walk most days now and still find a need sometimes for a small chocolate bar. smile If my sugar gets down to low, a candy bar gets it up faster than orange juice. Therefore, I have candy bars on hand all the time. smile

 

CHOCOLATECELLO.jpgCHOCOLATECANDY3.gif

 

HUGSMOUSEINSUGAR.gifHAVEAGOODDAY1.gif

 

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I can't believe westie still hasn't come to look at this with that tempting title! Oh my!

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I'm guessing she has, and is either

 

1.) Rendered speechless at the thought of not craving chocolate

 

*OR*

 

2.) Eating her chocolate trying to forget exercising

 

 

roflroflrofl

 

 

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