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Scientists are developing a pill that replaces exercise

Published Mar 22nd, 2024 3:04PM EDT
working out with kettlebells
Image: Shutter2U / Adobe

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Working out is great for you. In fact, exercise is one of the most important things you can do for your body. Unfortunately, with our busy schedules, we don’t always have time to set aside for working out, and that can make our weight loss journeys a lot more difficult. That could soon be a thing of the past, though, as researchers are working on a “workout pill” that could revolutionize how people lose weight.

We’ve seen previous work on exercise pills that could help promote some of the same brain signals that exercise releases. While those pills would be great for at-risk patients who need some of the benefits of exercising without having to physically do it, it doesn’t actually mimic the physical effects of exercise.

This new pill, however, does – at least in rodent cells. The new workout pill could actually give scientists and doctors a way to treat diseases like muscle atrophy and other medical conditions that require the muscles actually to be stimulated. It could also, if approved for that method, act similarly to other medications like Wegovy, which is currently used to help treat obesity and push weight loss.

Of course, this pill isn’t just going to replace exercise altogether. There’s no way to replace exercise; it’s just too important, the project researchers say. However, a pill like this could possibly enhance the effects that exercise has on your body and make it easier for people who are struggling to achieve the desired results they are looking for. 

The researchers highlighted the work they’ve completed on the workout pill at the American Chemical Society (ACS) this week. If research on the pill continues, then it could see a lot of usage, especially in cases where the patient just isn’t able to exercise to their full potential. This could help cut down on muscle atrophy, as well as help with weakness associated with aging, cancer, and other conditions.

Josh Hawkins has been writing for over a decade, covering science, gaming, and tech culture. He also is a top-rated product reviewer with experience in extensively researched product comparisons, headphones, and gaming devices.

Whenever he isn’t busy writing about tech or gadgets, he can usually be found enjoying a new world in a video game, or tinkering with something on his computer.