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Increasing Your Physical Activity—ENERGY OUT

Being physically active is just as important as eating right to maintain a healthy weight. It's half of the energy balance equation: balancing ENERGY IN from calories and nutrients in our food, and ENERGY OUT from our daily activities.

Many Americans don't get the necessary physical activity to achieve energy balance. Many adults work at jobs that require more time sitting at a desk or in a meeting than being physically active. Children spend more time sitting in school. Families spend hours sitting in front of TVs, playing video games, and using personal computers.

In addition, studies show that people often eat when they are in front of a screen, and this habit can be double trouble for a person's weight—very little ENERGY OUT to burn off all that ENERGY IN.

To help family members maintain a healthy weight or lose weight, it is best to change the energy balance on both sides—that is, reduce the ENERGY IN and increase ENERGY OUT.

You and your family can benefit from physical activity. It can:

  • Keep your body healthy
  • Burn calories to help you stay at a healthy weight
  • Make your bones and muscles strong
  • Make you feel energetic
  • Build strength and endurance
  • Help relieve stress
  • Help you sleep better
  • Help your mental health
  • Help you feel good about yourself
  • Give you something to do when you are bored
  • Be a fun way to spend time with family and friends

How much physical activity should your family get?

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services/U.S. Department of Agriculture Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommend that children and teens be physically active for at least 60 minutes on most, if not all, days.

Learn more about how much activity your family should get.


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