TED & Talks

Harvard professor debunks the biggest exercise myths | Daniel Lieberman

Exercise culture is crazy. But what you need to do is exceedingly simple.

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We hold many misconceptions about exercise. For example, we believe our ancestors were incredibly strong, or that there is a tradeoff between speed and strength.

The worst myth is that it’s normal to be less physically active as you get older. But modern hunter-gatherers remain physically active as they age.

Humans need about 150 minutes of exercise per week to be healthy, but 80% of us aren’t getting even that. A good solution is simply walking more.

Read the video transcript ► https://bigthink.com/series/explain-it-like-im-smart/exercise-myths/

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About Daniel Lieberman:
Daniel Lieberman is Edwin M. Lerner II Professor of Biological Sciences and a professor of the Department of Human Evolutionary Biology at Harvard University. He received degrees from Harvard and Cambridge, and taught at Rutgers University and George Washington University before joining Harvard University as a Professor in 2001. He is a member of American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Lieberman loves teaching and has published over 150 peer-reviewed papers, many in journals such as Nature, Science, and PNAS, as well as three popular books, The Evolution of the Human Head (2011), The Story of the Human Body: Evolution, Health and Disease (2013), and Exercised: Why Something We Never Evolved to Do is Healthy and Rewarding (2020).

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Read more of our stories on exercise:
When is the best time to exercise?
► https://bigthink.com/health/when-best-time-exercise/
This molecule may be the “secret sauce” of exercise — but it won’t work as a pill
► https://bigthink.com/health/lac-phe-exercise-pill/
How exercise changes your brain biology and protects your mental health
► https://bigthink.com/health/neurobiology-of-exercise/

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