In a world of misinformation, Fitness Pudding is here to separate fact from fallacy, and science from fiction.

Dr. Mark D. Faries is an Associate Professor and State Extension Health Specialist with Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, Adjunct Associate Professor at Texas A&M University College of Medicine and School of Public Health, as well as a member of the Board of Directors for the American College of Lifestyle Medicine.


Dr. Faries is a health psychologist and exercise physiologist, with expertise in behavioral medicine. His research focuses on medication adherence, when "lifestyle" is the medicine.

Is Walking With Hand Weights Worth It?

Is Walking With Hand Weights Worth It?
Brenda lived two streets down from our rental house. At the time, I was an undergraduate at Texas A&M, and rode my bike to campus each morning.  On my way, I would see Brenda speed walking t......
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RE: Exercise Doesn't Help with Weight Loss

RE: Exercise Doesn't Help with Weight Loss
If you were interested by our previous post, Exercise Doesn't Help with Weight Loss – a review of a controversial editorial, "It is time to bust the myth of physical in activity and obesity: You cannot outrun a b......
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'Fitness' Food Make Us Eat More, Exercise Less?

'Fitness' Food Make Us Eat More, Exercise Less?
Healthy buzzwords on food labels can be misleading. Below is a recent press release from the American Marketing Association, investigating the effects of 'fitness' branded food on consumption in 'restrained' eaters. Restrained eaters are ridgid, chronic dieters......
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10,000 Steps Per Day Debunked?

10,000 Steps Per Day Debunked?
How many steps should you get a day? If your answer was 10,000, then you are not alone. Most people believe that we are required to get 10,000 steps per day to improve our health. However,......
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Fat in Food: Expert Opinions

Fat in Food: Expert Opinions
Fat in food is, and might always be a hot and controversial topic. We learn something new everday that expands our understanding, allowing us to make educated decisions in our healthy eating lifestyles. Of course any......
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Smartphone Messing Up Your Workout?

Smartphone Messing Up Your Workout?
Years ago, we figured out that listening to music, watching TV, or both provided a distraction or dissociation from the discomfort that comes along with exercise. For many people the discomfort is not enjoyable, and can......
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How Many Glasses of Water Should We Drink a Day?

How Many Glasses of Water Should We Drink a Day?
8 cups per day, right? Well, my esteemed colleague, Dr. Michael Greger, put this question to the test, and I thought I would share his expert insight with you. Enjoy, as I go get me a......
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A Pound of Fat Equals 3,500 Calories?

A Pound of Fat Equals 3,500 Calories?
The common idea that 1 pound of fat is equal to 3,500 calories most likely comes from original research in the late 1950's on the effects of fasting in obese individuals. Well, it stuck, and is......
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Is It Bad to Run on a Flat Treadmill?

Is It Bad to Run on a Flat Treadmill?
Someone recently asked if running on a flat treadmill (0% grade) was bad. When I questioned a bit further, she confessed to reading an online article that put running on a flat treadmill in the top 7......
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Exercise Doesn't Help with Weight Loss

Exercise Doesn't Help with Weight Loss
An editorial was recently published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, claiming that "you cannot outrun a bad diet". This editorial (not a research study) has spawned a media frenzy of posts that presumably confirm t......
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Does Exercise Make You Eat More?

Does Exercise Make You Eat More?
We know that physical activity is a key component to successful weight loss and maintenance, especially when paired with healthy food (energy) intake. However, some research suggests that differences in weight loss might be explained (at......
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Waist Training: Squeezing Out the Truth

Waist Training: Squeezing Out the Truth
Waist training is the process of wearing a modern take on a Victorian era corset in order to (1) provide an instant slimming, hourglass figure effect, (2) motivate one to improve posture and eat healthier, and......
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Is Self-Weighing Good or Bad?

Is Self-Weighing Good or Bad?
A client of mine stepped on the scale after a 12-week weight loss program, to find she had lost 6 lbs. She was ecstatic at her positive results, sharing a smile that would warm any heart.......
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Massaging Fat Away?

Massaging Fat Away?
Vibration machines have been popular for a long time, and most of us probably have an image of the machines that use a belt to vigorously shake our fat away, or steamrollers to flatten fat to......
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Glucomannan: A 'Super-Fiber'?

Glucomannan: A 'Super-Fiber'?
Glucomannan, the famous 'super-fiber' got a major boost this March (2015), when a review promoted its benefit in weight loss. However, a lot has happened since then! To some degree, this is an update to a......
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Is Mall Walking Good Exercise?

Is Mall Walking Good Exercise?
We have all seen them before, pacing the perimeter of the mall in a tight-laced pair of walking shoes. I have personally been lapped, twice, by a mall walker at Post Oak Mall in College Station,......
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Weight Loss Smells: Scents and Food Cravings

Weight Loss Smells: Scents and Food Cravings
Our desire to eat is not always due a deep, physiological drive for hunger. We easily respond to cues from food, such as how they look, sound, and smell. Our emotions also play an important role......
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Are Setting Goals Good or Bad?

Are Setting Goals Good or Bad?
Most health and fitness behaviors are organized around goals. We set goals for ourselves, and then enact behaviors that will get us to that goal – at least that is what we hope. We have decades o......
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Women, Weight Lifting and Big Muscles

Women, Weight Lifting and Big Muscles
The #1 reported barrier to weight training by women, is the fear of getting big muscles. This fear is very unfortunate, because (1) it is a fallacy, and (2) it prevents women from enjoying all o......
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Jogging as Deadly as Sitting on Couch?

Jogging as Deadly as Sitting on Couch?
Some recent headlines have some reconsidering going for their next jog! "Too much jogging as bad as no exercise at all." "Fast running is as deadly as sitting on couch, scientists find."  "Stop that binge jogging!......
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