Born to Move
A new study proves our DNA holds a biological desire and need for movement. Using large scientific data bases, researchers at Texas A&M University compared and cross-referenced our DNA to our ancestors’ and found that most of the relevant DNA snippets – those associated with more physical activity in people today – were extremely old, dating back 500,000 years to our ancestors Homo erectus.
This makes sense because during this time in our evolutionary history our ancestors began to spread out looking for food. Our brains developed with the need for movement in order to survive! “If you were lazy then, you did not survive,” states Timothy Lightfoot, a professor of kinesiology at Texas A&M. If you were physically active, however, you were able to find food, have sex and pass along these “active” genes.
This sounds a lot like survival of the fittest. What does this research mean today when most Americans are sedentary? With the scooter revolution taking over most cities, many humans are jumping on a Bird or Lime instead of walking a few blocks from the metro to the office. Are we going to be more sedentary five years from now? Does it still matter for procreation and survival? We may have to wait a few thousand years to determine the effects of our inactive lifestyles.