We all know America is facing an obesity crisis, thanks largely to the high-sugar, high-calorie, processed foods that have taken over our diets. One of the worst offenders? Syrupy sweet and chemical-laden sodas.
But as The New York Times reported in a damning article this week, Coca-Cola has been funding scientific research to show that exercise matters more than diet when it comes to our waistlines—all in what appears to be an effort to deflect blame and protect its bottom line.
The premise contradicts a plethora of studies showing that eating less and limiting sugar intake is far more important than exercise in combatting obesity. It also fails to account for the fact that drinking soda raises blood sugar levels and causes people to eat more because they're not filled up by the empty calories.
But okay, sure, exercise is important, too, Coke. How important? We calculated just how much activity you'd need to perform if you decided to introduce one 12-ounce can of Coke into your diet every day for a year. With 140 calories per serving, the daily indulgence would add up to 51,100 calories, or roughly 14.6 pounds of fat. Here are a few ways you could avoid gaining weight:
Walk from Boston to Atlanta
Per the The New York Times article, it takes about three miles to offset one can of Coke—so you'd have to walk roughly 1,095 miles to burn off a year's worth of Coke.
Swim from Miami to Havana
Swimming burns about 380 to 440 calories per hour—so you'd have to swim for roughly 134 hours to offset those daily cans.
Dance to Taylor Swift's 'Shake It Off' 2,680 times
Dancing burns about 286 calories per hour. And "Shake It Off" is four minutes long. So jamming to it for a total of 179 hours would do the trick.
Do 349,200 jumping jacks
Vigorous jumping jacks (i.e., one per second) burns roughly 527 calories per hour. So, NBD, you'd simply need to do 15 minutes—or 956 jumping jacks—every day.
Have sex for 177 hours
Yes, passionate sex burns about 288 calories per hour, or a little more than twice the amount in a can of Coke. So, just make sure to have sex for 30 minutes every. single. day.
All totally realistic.
NOTE: The equations above are based on calorie estimates from MyFitnessPal.com. They do not take into account individual weight, fitness levels, or other personal details and may vary from person to person.
Taryn Hillin is Fusion's love and sex writer, with a large focus on the science of relationships. She also loves dogs, Bourbon barrel-aged beers and popcorn — not necessarily in that order.