Let’s get moving with Non- Exercise Activity Thermogenesis (NEAT)

05 Jul 2023
Health & Fitness Health & Fitness, Health & Wellness, Personal Training, Wellness

In the quest for better health and wellbeing, we often focus on structured exercise routines and intense workouts. However, there's another aspect of physical activity that can significantly impact our overall well-being: non-exercise activity thermogenesis (NEAT). NEAT refers to the energy we expend through everyday movements and activities that are not part of intentional exercise. From fidgeting to household chores and gardening, NEAT plays a vital role in maintaining a healthy lifestyle. In this article, we will explore the concept of NEAT, its benefits, and how you can incorporate it into your daily routine to enhance your health and wellbeing goals. 
What is Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis (NEAT): Non-exercise activity thermogenesis encompasses all the physical activities we engage in during our daily lives, excluding intentional exercise. This includes activities like walking, standing, cleaning, gardening, taking the stairs, and even fidgeting. NEAT accounts for a significant portion of our total daily energy expenditure and can vary greatly between individuals based on lifestyle, occupation, and personal habits. 
The Benefits of NEAT: 

  • Incorporating NEAT into your daily routine can boost your metabolism and help burn additional calories throughout the day.  

  • Activities that involve moderate-intensity movements, such as brisk walking or gardening, can provide cardiovascular benefits, promoting a healthier heart and circulatory system.  

  • Helps improve joint mobility, flexibility, and overall functional fitness, making everyday tasks easier and reducing the risk of injuries. 

  • NEAT activities have been shown to have positive effects on mental health, reducing stress levels and promoting a sense of well-being.  

  • Regular movement throughout the day can also enhance cognitive function and productivity.  

How can you incorporate more NEAT activities into your daily routine? 

  • Opt for walking or cycling instead of driving whenever possible. If the distance is too great, consider getting off public transportation a few stops earlier and walking the rest of the way.  

  • Take short breaks throughout the day to stand up, stretch, and move around. Use a standing desk if available, and consider walking meetings or taking the stairs instead of the elevator.  

  • Embrace household tasks as an opportunity for physical activity. Cleaning, vacuuming, gardening, and other chores can help you burn calories while keeping your living space tidy.  

  • Look for opportunities to increase movement in your daily life. Park farther away from the entrance, choose the stairs over escalators, and find hobbies or recreational activities that involve physical exertion.  

Utilise wearable fitness trackers or smartphone apps to monitor your daily activity levels and set goals for increasing NEAT. Keeping a record of your steps, active minutes, or calories burned can motivate you to make consistent progress. 
Non-exercise activity thermogenesis is an essential aspect of a healthy and active lifestyle. By incorporating more movement into our daily routines, we can reap numerous benefits, including increased calorie expenditure, improved cardiovascular health, enhanced mobility, and mental well-being. So, let's embrace the power of NEAT and make small changes in our everyday lives to boost our overall health and fitness levels. Remember, every step counts towards a healthier and happier you!

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