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How was the physics of weight loss understood before SR?

  1. May 5, 2015 #1
    People jog, thereby expending energy, and lose weight because of it. As modern people who understand mass energy equivalence, we know (or can presume) that during the process of running, the body derives its kinetic energy by breaking down ATP in the cells. When this breakdown occurs, the total mass present decreases and eventually the person loses significant amounts of weight (please let me know if anything here is factually incorrect).

    Since people have known for millennia that running leads to weight loss, how was it explained before E=mc^2.
  2. jcsd
  3. May 5, 2015 #2


    Staff: Mentor

    Your whole premise is incorrect. Weight loss due to exercise has nothing to do with mass-energy equivalence; the mass equivalent of the energy consumed during exercise is many orders of magnitude too small to account for weight loss. The question of how exercise leads to weight loss is a question about physiology, not physics. Thread closed.
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