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Are some people doomed to be fat?

点击量:   时间:2018-01-11 05:01:32

By Linda Geddes (Image: Randy Mora) Some people can’t lose weight – and others can’t put it on. What separates whippets from walruses? MY HUSBAND is the kind of man that most people hate. He can eat three helpings of dinner, yet stays steadfastly slender. He plays football just once a week, but throw him into a half marathon and he will complete the entire course in a faster time than most of those who have slogged through weeks of training. He once had a full body scan and was told they had never seen someone with so little internal or surface body fat. He doesn’t, to my knowledge, have worms. We all know people who eat like horses yet are as skinny as rakes, while others, like me, seem to pile on the pounds just thinking about food. At the heart of the difference is metabolism, the sum of the chemical reactions occurring in the body at any given time. Clearly there is more to it than a simple balance between calories eaten and calories burned through exercise. But many of our popular conceptions about metabolism don’t stand up to scrutiny. So what is the difference between people like my husband and those like me? And can we use that knowledge to take our metabolic fates into our own hands? It was the 17th-century physician Santorio Sanctorius who launched the study of metabolism. For three decades, he used a specially constructed “weighing chair” to record his weight before and after eating, sleeping, working,