Earth is on a diet

Oct 17, 2016 | written by:

How much does the Earth weigh? Does it diet like us? And above all, how we can weigh the planet? Of course, the classic balance is not a good choice, much better is to opt for the laws of physics: Earth's radius, the value of the acceleration of gravity and some formula. You get a number so high, that is also difficult to say: 5.976 billion of billion tons. Or 5,976 followed by 21 zeros! Thus, the Earth would seem a Planet with an urgent need to diet itself but it’s not exact. This is the period in which its lighter. Why? Because its inhabitants are thinner.

Maybe not all, but certainly those of the United States, Germany and Japan. Autumn has already knocked on the door, settled on the home’s couch, bringing as a gift its load of vegetables and legumes, perfect for an healthier diet. Moreover, if we think, fest days are still far away and with them calories.

It is no surprise, but now is no longer merely an assumption. A recent study published in the New England Journal of Medicine showed that much of our weight also depends by the calendar. Holidays like Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter, have all a common denominator: food, causing visible effects on the scale. Researchers collected data on the weight of about three thousand people (1781 American, 760 German and 383 Japanese), using information gathered through the wireless scales (devices that communicate the recorded data to the apps available on smartphones). Data on daily weigh were then recorded over a whole year (from August 2012 to July 2013), put together and used to develop a graph of the weight during different months for different countries.

Christmas (and the days after) is of course the most harmful period: here curves rear up with 0.8kg more per person. Next to this general trend, however, it’s also possible to observe peaks for individual countries: close to the Golden Week in Japan, Easter for German and Thanksgiving for the United States. "About half of the weight put on during holidays is lost quickly, the other half may remain in the following months – say the authors of the research. For sure less we put on weight, less we will lose."


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