Want to Lose Weight? Try Sudoku.

November 27, 2009 (PLANSPONSOR.com) –  If you’re looking for a way to keep those holiday pounds in check, you might want to try Sudoku.


Puzzles could be a new kind of workout, according to a researcher who claims you can burn 90 calories an hour doing Sudoku challenges.  According to a report in the UK’s Daily Mail, doing puzzles and quizzes burns an average of 90 calories every hour. 

In fact, researcher Tim Forrester, from cannyminds.com, explains: ‘Our brains require 0.1 calories every minute simply to survive,” according to the report.  ‘When we do something challenging such as a puzzle or a quiz we can burn through 1.5 calories every minute,” he said.

Considering the “puzzles” plan sponsors must solve every day, you wouldn’t think any additional dieting would be needed. 

Mental “Health?” 

The cannyminds.com web site also cites a study that engaging in a hobby – like reading a book, making a patchwork quilt or even playing computer games – can delay the onset of dementia.  However, a study by researchers from the Mayo Clinic, in a paper to be presented to an American Academy of Neurology meeting, notes that watching TV does not count.  Indeed, spending significant periods of time in front of the box may speed up memory loss, according to the report. 

Nearly 200 people aged 70 to 89 with mild memory problems were compared with a group who had no impairment, and those who had kept busy during middle age (age 50-65) reading, playing games or engaging in craft hobbies , were found to have a 40% reduced risk of memory impairment.  In later life, those same activities reduced the risk by between 30 and 50%, according to the report.