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Curb Your Appetite by Staying Warm During Workouts

Trail running woman on snow in winter mountains
Updated: December 5, 2020
Posted In: Best Of The Web

Whether you exercise at the gym or the park, you may notice how differently people dress from one another for their workouts.

Some people wear short shorts and tank tops, whereas others wear several layers of pants, shirts, and jackets. Considering the amount of controversy that exists surrounding how to dress appropriately for exercise, most people end up doing whatever makes them feel most comfortable. However, a new study shows that bundling up during your fitness routine can help curb your appetite following your workout.

The study, which was conducted by researchers across multiple UK universities, recruited men and women who were generally sedentary and overweight, then examined how dressing warmly during workouts impacted their appetites.

Each person walked on a treadmill for 45 minutes at a pace that represented about 60 percent of their maximum aerobic capacity. For the first experiment, study participants exercised in a room that was set to 68 degrees Fahrenheit and 40 percent humidity. For the second experiment, which was conducted on a different day, participants wore the same workout clothes and exercised in 40-degree temperatures with the same 40 percent humidity rate.

Following each exercise session, each participant rested for 45 minutes while they had their blood drawn and were provided with food. The researchers learned that the participants who worked out in colder temperatures tended to consume larger portions following their workouts thanks to a rise in ghrelin, which is the hunger hormone that induces feelings of hunger.

At this time, the study remains largely inconclusive since it only involved men and women who were generally overweight and sedentary. To learn more about why ghrelin levels increased in cold weather for these individuals, scientists will need to conduct further research to determine whether those with different body types and fitness levels would also exhibit similar results.

Although the study findings reveal that wearing less-warm clothing while exercising in cold weather can result in an increase in appetite, it’s also possible that perhaps the study participants were hungrier because their bodies worked harder to stay warm. In the meantime, experts suggest that those who exercise start bundling up to sweat more, keep their muscles warm, and suppress their appetites.

 

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