Share this article on:

Constrained Total Energy Expenditure and the Evolutionary Biology of Energy Balance

Pontzer, Herman

Exercise and Sport Sciences Reviews: July 2015 - Volume 43 - Issue 3 - p 110–116
doi: 10.1249/JES.0000000000000048

The human body adapts dynamically to maintain total energy expenditure (TEE) within a narrow physiological range. Rather than increasing with physical activity in a dose-dependent manner, experimental and ecological evidence suggests the hypothesis that TEE is a relatively constrained product of our evolved physiology.

The body adapts to changes in physical activity to keep total energy expenditure in check.

Hunter College, New York, NY City University of New York, New York, NY, New York Consortium for Evolutionary Primatology, New York, NY

Address for correspondence: Herman Pontzer, Ph.D., Hunter College, City University of New York, Department of Anthropology, 728 North Bldg, 695 Park Ave, New York, NY 10065 (E-mail:

Accepted for publication: February 4, 2015.

Associate Editor: Edward L. Melanson, Ph.D., FACSM

© 2015 American College of Sports Medicine