If you never had to feel the burn again, but could get all the benefits of exercise anyway from just a drink, would you consume it? Nestle is betting you would. The company recently announced they’re making a drink to give people all the fat-burning benefits of exercise — without having to get on a single treadmill.
Nestle recently published new research saying they have identified an enzyme called AMPK that regulates the body’s metabolism and now they’re using their new discovery to develop “exercise in a bottle.” Amazing, right? Who wouldn’t want this?
Multitasking is the name of the game for most of us. But take it from me, a person who has had an ulcer, a diet pill problem and a five-year stint on anti-depressant meds, it’s not all it’s cracked up to be. And while the lure of the quick fix is real, the reality might not be so shiny.
Here are 10 reasons that “exercise in a bottle” wouldn’t be worth it — even if it worked:
1. It’s more about strengthening their bottom line than your bottom
“Let’s be honest, the Nestle move is more about selling a product than trying to help people,” says Adam Bornstein, founder of Born Fitness and The New York Times bestselling author. Besides, he says, “Haven’t we seen this before, from magical cleanses to fat-burning pills? The body is a complex machine. Trying to identify one factor that is linked to fat loss and trigger that effect is like saying, ‘We’ve bottled what makes you fall in love. Take this and you’ll find the one!'”
2. It will give you an excuse to skip your workout
“Tell people they can drink something instead of exercise and it just gives them a reason to do so,” Bornstein says.
3. You won’t get all the heart-healthy benefits
Bornstein explains that drinking this can’t improve blood flow or prevent cardiovascular disease, one of the best benefits of exercise when it comes to longevity, because that improvement only happens with movement.
4. You’ll end up with weak bones
One of the proven ways to prevent osteoporosis or bone loss as we age is weight-bearing exercise like running or lifting weights. Your bones grow in response to the stress you put on them and the eight ounces in a bottle is definitely not going to do that.
5. You’ll be a weakling
This could turn into a vicious cycle, Bornstein points out. “It won’t help keep your muscles strong, which is what allows you to move in the first place. Muscles also boost your metabolism and help you to process food more effectively so you can ward off fat.”
6. You’ll be more susceptible to depression
Being prone to lifelong anxiety and depression (my family tree is a weeping willow), probably the best benefits of exercise for me are the mental benefits I get. My daily workout makes me feel happier, more energetic, more positive and forces me out of bed on days I might not otherwise want to leave the house. And I’m not the only one. Research has shown that exercise works just as well for mild to moderate depression as medication does. (For the record I do both.)
7. You’ll be less creative
Ever noticed how you get all your best ideas during your morning run or even the walk to the mailbox? In addition to boosting your mood, recent research has found that simply walking helps activate the parts of our brain used for imagination and creative thinking.
8. You might end up fatter
“The quality and quantity of your food is a huge factor in your health so if you stop going to the gym and don’t reduce how much you’re eating, then even if you don’t gain weight, you’ll still be gaining fat,” says Erica Giovinazzo, a registered dietitian and CrossFit trainer. “Eventually all that will catch up with you. Remember short-term fixes will only get you short-term results.”
9. You’ll lose the ability to exercise
“With movement it really is as simple as ‘use it or lose it,'” Bornstein says, pointing out that balance, agility, flexibility and strength are all learned skills that get better with practice. “The last thing we need is to give people a reason to move less. Anything is good, even something as simple as walking.”
10. You’re missing the point of healthy living
“A lot of people forget that exercise isn’t about fat loss; it’s about health,” Bornstein explains. “So trying to minimize its importance for your longevity and well-being is a massive disservice.”
Still think it sounds great? If it seems too good to be true, it probably is.
Would you try exercise in a bottle?