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Not only was the 80s the best decade for music, white jackets with the sleeves rolled up and large, very stiff hair dos, but it was even harder to be overweight back then.
For reasons that remain unclear, it has become more difficult to stay slim. A study by the York University in Toronto has found that people today can eat and exercise the same as their 80s counterparts, but still be significantly fatter.
The study, led by Jennifer Kuk, shows that weight management is much more complex than energy in versus energy out, with many other factors playing a part.
Sleep, stress, working patterns, types of medications, exposure to man made pollution and a change in the make up of gut bacteria all play a part.
The study was based on the analysis of diet and exercise on 36,400 US adults, combined with the physical activity of 14,400 subjects. When the numbers were crunched the team found that a given person in 2006 consuming the same amount of calories, made up of the same ratio of carbohydrate, fat and protein, and exercising the same amount as a person of the same age in 1988 typically had a BMI 2.3 points higher.
Body builders and personal trainers have long known that it’s not just about energy in vs energy out. Many other factors play a part. To get a six-pack, for example, requires not just the correct amount of energy (including the right ratio of macro-nutrients) but also requires a lowering of stress, both exercise induced and lifestyle induced. It requires sleep. Lots of it. It requires hormonal balance. It also requires minimal interference from modern drugs and medications.
So it follows that even to stay fit and trim, these factors need to be managed correctly too.