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Includes Expert Content
Metabolism vs. metabolic equivalent
diverdileo posted:
if heavier weight people have a higher metabolic equivalent when calculating energy expenditure during exercise (MET x Body Weight = calorie expenditure) , then how come it is said it is said that heavier people have slow metabolisms and burn off less calories during the course of a day?
Rich Weil, MEd, CDE responded:
1. You should not confuse MET values with basal or resting metabolic rate. MET values are an expression of energy expenditure during physical activity and can overestimate resting energy expenditure by as much as 20% to 30%, so a higher MET value does not mean there has to be a higher metabolic rate.

2. Some overweight people do have low metabolic rates, but it's not true that all people who are heavy have slow metabolic rates. Metabolic rates vary widely (can be anywhere from app 1000kcal/day to as much as 2500kcal/day), based to a large degree on muscle mass (which can explain as much as 60% to 90% of the variation) and to a much lesser degree on fat mass (which explains much less than 10% of the variation), as well as other factors (e.g., diet-induced thermogenesis, age, etc).
jp94952 responded:
You've got it exactly backwards. Bigger people burn more calories than normal people, not fewer.

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