ABC Science reported today that social sports "result in better weight loss."
During a recent study, scientists found that mice involved in physical activity with a social component responded better to the exercise.
How? Their bodies' composition and metabolism improved.
The scientists divided the mice into groups - some were kept in large containers with "toys" -- tunnels, running wheels, huts, nesting material, and so on. Others stayed in smaller containers and only had access to a running wheel -- a mouse treadmill. Neither group had its food or water restricted.
The report was conducted by Professor Mathew During of the Ohio State University Medical Centre and the report was published this month in industry journal Cell Metabolism.
Both groups lost weight, but the "social" groups, the ones with the toys, lost more body fat. "We were seeing somewhere between 50 and 80 per cent drop, which is quite remarkable. It was much more than in the animals who were just running. They had, maximally, between a 20 and 40 per cent drop off," During told ABC Science.
Aside from losing double the amount of fat, the social mice looked better. During says they "had a much deeper color."
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It makes sense that people would become more engaged and more apt to continue with physical activity if they are mentally engaged.
As During says, "What this study says is that it's not just active lifestyle that is important, you have to be challenged socially and with a changing environment - you don't just get this from going to the gym and running on a treadmill."
If this is a social sport, count me in: