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Thread: Primate energy expenditure

  1. #1 Primate energy expenditure 
    Forum Radioactive Isotope sculptor's Avatar
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    A study published January 14, 2014 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences suggests that humans and other primates burn 50% fewer calories each day than other mammals of similar size. This slow metabolism, the researchers say, may help explain why humans and other primates grow up slower and live longer than most mammals.

    An international team of scientists examined 17 primate species in zoos, sanctuaries and in the wild. Using a safe and non-invasive technique, they measured the number of calories the primates burned over a 10-day period. Herman Pontzer,Associate Professor of Anthropology at Hunter College, led the study. Pontzer said:

    The results were a real surprise. Humans, chimpanzees, baboons and other primates expend only half the calories wed expect for a mammal. To put that in perspective, a human even someone with a very physically active lifestyle would need to run a marathon each day just to approach the average daily energy expenditure of a mammal their size.

    The study also found that primates in captivity expend as many calories each day as their counterparts living in the wild. The researchers say this suggests that physical activity may have less of an impact on daily energy expenditure than was previously believed.

    Bottom line: Humans and other primates burn 50% fewer calories each day than other mammals of similar size. This slow metabolism, the researchers say, may help explain why humans and other primates grow up slower and live longer than most mammals.

    Primates, including humans, burn half as many calories as other mammals | Earth | EarthSky
    and
    Primate energy expenditure and life history

    Your thoughts?


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  3. #2  
    Forum Professor Zwolver's Avatar
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    I always look at the heartbeat for this. And we have a way slower heartbeat than other animals of our size. And i wouldn't say we burn 50% less calories. I have read somewhere it was about 8% less calories. But we need about two times more water (mainly because we chose more food that has little water, but also because of the brain)

    I haven't looked at the documents, but i think i will now.. This was just my preconception about it.

    (after reading it didn't scream like valid evidence to me, plus i couldn't read most of it anyway, i will not change my opinion based on classified research)


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  4. #3  
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    I think we'll have to wait for more commentaries which cite bigger extracts from the paper itself. All the good stuff is still behind the paywall so those of us without subscriptions will have to wait for those with access to do the work for us.
    "Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen." Winston Churchill
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