Daily energy expenditure through the human life course

Herman Pontzer*, Yosuke Yamada*, Hiroyuki Sagayama*, Philip N. Ainslie, Lene F. Andersen, Liam J. Anderson, Lenore Arab, Issaad Baddou, Kweku Bedu-Addo, Ellen E. Blaak, Stephane Blanc, Alberto G. Bonomi, Carlijn V. C. Bouten, Pascal Bovet, Maciej S. Buchowski, Nancy F. Butte, Stefan G. Camps, Graeme L. Close, Jamie A. Cooper, Richard CooperSai Krupa Das, Lara R. Dugas, Ulf Ekelund, Sonja Entringer, Terrence Forrester, Barry W. Fudge, Annelies H Goris, Michael Gurven, Catherine Hambly, Asmaa El Hamdouchi, Marjije B. Hoos, Sumei Hu, Noorjehan Joonas, Annemiek M. Joosen, Peter Katzmarzyk, Kitty P. Kempen, Misaka Kimura, William E. Kraus, Robert F. Kushner, Estelle V. Lambert, William R. Leonard, Nader Lessan, Corby Martin, Anine C. Medin, Erwin P. Meijer, James C. Morehen, James P. Morton, Marian L. Neuhouser, Teresa A. Nicklas, Robert M. Ojiambo, Kirsi H. Pietiläinen, Yannis P. Pitsiladis, Jacob Plange-Rhule, Guy Plasqui, Ross L. Prentice, Roberto A. Rabinovich, Susan B. Racette, David A. Raichlen, Eric Ravussin, Rebecca M. Reynolds, Susan B. Roberts, Albertine J. Schuit, Anders M. Sjödin, Eric Stice, Samuel S. Urlacher, Giulio Valenti, Ludo M. Van Etten, Edgar A Van Mil, Jonathan C. K. Wells, George Wilson, Brian M. Wood, Jack Yanovski, Tsukasa Yoshida, Xueying Zhang, Alexia J. Murphy-Alford, Cornelia Loechl, Amy H. Luke*, Jennifer Rood*, Dale A. Schoeller*, Klaas R. Westerterp*, William W. Wong*, John R. Speakman*, IAEA DLW Database Consortium

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

    243 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Total daily energy expenditure (“total expenditure”) reflects daily energy needs and is a critical variable in human health and physiology, but its trajectory over the life course is poorly studied. We analyzed a large, diverse database of total expenditure measured by the doubly labeled water method for males and females aged 8 days to 95 years. Total expenditure increased with fat-free mass in a power-law manner, with four distinct life stages. Fat-free mass–adjusted expenditure accelerates rapidly in neonates to ~50% above adult values at ~1 year; declines slowly to adult levels by ~20 years; remains stable in adulthood (20 to 60 years), even during pregnancy; then declines in older adults. These changes shed light on human development and aging and should help shape nutrition and health strategies across the life span.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)808-812
    Number of pages5
    JournalScience
    Volume373
    Issue number6556
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 13 Aug 2021

    Scopus Subject Areas

    • General

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