Weight loss without the workout is the dream, but a new pill claims to do just that.
University of Sydney researchers discovered the exercise “blueprint” for mimicking, through drugs, the approximately 1,000 molecular changes that occur in the body during physical activity.
“Exercise produces an extremely complex, cascading set of responses within human muscle. It plays an essential role in controlling energy metabolism and insulin sensitivity,” explains co-author Dr. Nolan Hoffman.
“While scientists have long suspected that exercise causes a complicated series of changes to human muscle, this is the first time we have been able to map exactly what happens.”
The study, described as a “major breakthrough” by Hoffman, involved examining muscle biopsies from four untrained, healthy men who had just done 10 minutes of high intensity exercise. Using a technique called mass spectrometry, they discovered that short, intensive exercise triggers more than 1,000 changes – the majority of which had not previously been associated with exercise.
“Exercise is the most powerful therapy for many human diseases, including type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and neurological disorders,” says David James, head of the research group. “However, for many people, exercise isn’t a viable treatment option. This means it is essential we find ways of developing drugs that mimic the benefits of exercise.”
The one bit of bad news is that the drug’s development could take well over a decade, so for now, you best get back to working up a sweat.