Take Heart, Sweet Summer Children: Shivering Might Help You Lose Body Fat
Get that shriveled White Walker look you've always been jealous of.
It was 28 degrees Fahrenheit this morning when I got to work. Tomorrow, it might snow up to a foot in New York again. But it’s worth it if it means I don’t have to exercise, am I right, laaaaadies?! No, wait, it’s not. Please. I want to feel the sun again.
A recent study published last month in the journal Cell Metabolism notes that the muscles you use to shiver activate “brown fat” in your body, which is a type of fat that burns energy to generate heat. Basically, when you’re cold, your body may burn certain kinds of fat just to keep you from not being cold anymore — which explains why this type of brown fat is commonly found in animals who hibernate for the winter.
Of course, no studies have yet shown that shivering can actually lead to any significant weight loss without the added benefits that come from a healthy diet and regular exercise, and the white and yellow fats around your waist, hips and thighs are much harder to break down. As the above video from DNews explains, though, exercising in a colder environment might help to ultimately keep you warmer year-round by conditioning your body. You just have to be extra careful about hydrating yourself and wearing the proper clothing, as cold temperatures can exacerbate asthmatic or heart conditions.
This is ultimately good news, but not because we want to look more toned for the summer or anything. By now we all understand that the summer will never come and that we will be forced to endure this eternal winter for the rest of our days. However, if the science proves correct, with any luck we’ll shrink away into shivering nothingness and embrace the sweet release of death when our frail human bodies freeze over. I mean, The Little Match Girl made hypothermia seem pretty nice.
(via Geeks are Sexy)