In the future, you may be able to forgo exercise and still stay healthy, by having your genes tweaked instead. By tweaking a single gene, scientists have mimicked in sedentary mice the heart-strengthening effects of two weeks of endurance training.

The genetic manipulation spurred the animals’ heart muscle cells to proliferate and grow larger by an amount comparable to normal mice that swam for up to three hours a day. Alas, this type of gene manipulation can’t be done in humans, but these findings may suggest a future strategy for repairing injured hearts through muscle regeneration.

Researcher Bruce Spiegelman says, "If we learned to manipulate this pathway with specific exercise regimens or with drugs, we might be able to achieve some of the benefits produced by exercise-related heart enlargement." Researcher Pontus Bostroom says, "We decided to try and find a gene that could be driving some of the important changes we see in exercise." Researcher Anthony Rosenzweig says, "It’s well documented that exercise has beneficial effects on metabolism and skeletal muscle, but we hypothesized that it might also have more direct beneficial effects in the heart itself that could be exploited to protect against heart failure."

Here’s OUR prediction for the future: Professional athletes will no longer have to worry about urine tests to detect drugs–they will simple have their genes manipulated instead!

Exercise is important, when it comes to getting (and keeping) off your excess weight. If one of your New Year’s resolutions is to shed some pounds, you need to download Anne Strieber’s famous diet book, "What I Learned From the Fat Years," which contains a whole chapter on exercise entitled "The Tyranny of the Body." Using scientific principles, Anne Strieber devised a diet that helped her to lose 100 pounds and with her help (and expert advice) YOU CAN TOO. Every year, in January, our resident prophet John Hogue tell us what’s going to happen in the coming year–and every June we hold his feet to the fire and examine whether his predictions came true. This January, we’re also going to interview Starfire Tor about whether her 2009 predictions came true in 2010 (NOTE: Subscribers can still listen to these shows).

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