You’d want to know whether you lose more weight in hot or cold weather and perhaps if the weather plays a part in your weight loss effort. The truth is, it does, quite significantly.
Do You lose more weight in cold or hot weather? You burn more calories in cold weather than when it’s warm. And although it may appear like you burn more calories in the heat, the rate usually decreases as you acclimatize. You’re, therefore, more likely to lose more weight in cold weather than in hot weather.
Are you looking to lose weight but can’t determine which weather suits you? This article is for you. We’ll help you understand which between cold and hot weather complements your weight loss effort.
The Relationship Between Weight Loss and Weather: The Science Behind It
The relationship between weather and weight loss is stark, and it’s indeed true that the latter impacts the former. Cold and hot weather produces corresponding degrees of heat and cold, but you can lose more weight in the cold.
One study (1) examining the impact of cold exposures and acute heat at or during exercise on subsequent energy intake offered a contrasting variable on this claim.
The recent study stated that food intake for energy most impacts weight loss in such temperatures, and not necessarily the temperatures involved. According to the study, temperature’s influence is more indirect than direct.
That’s a pretty interesting argument, considering the variation in energy expenditures and food intake in cold and hot weather. Nonetheless, the general view is that you hardly lose much weight in hot temperatures, even though it may initially appear so.
Technically, you’ll burn more calories when initially exposed to hot weather, but this rate drastically reduces after acclimatizing. This response can be well-explained by the thermal performance curve(2).
Do You Lose More Weight When It’s Cold?
It would help if you lost more weight when cold than hot; cold weather can be your ideal condition. Cold temperature exposure pushes your body to its limit, prompting it to burn more calories and increase its inner temperatures. Frequent exposure to the cold stimulates brown adipose tissue (BAT) to release more energy to burn calories and facilitate weight loss.
You can improve your weight loss capacity in cold weather during your cold exposure sessions by factoring in a little workout and activity. Exercises facilitate more effective fat and calorie burning, and you’ll record impressive results quickly. You can also read here the key reason why taking cold shower may help you lose weight.
The good thing about exercising in cold weather is that it further pushes your body to speed up its metabolism, raise the inner temperature and burn more fat.
do you burn more calories in the heat Or Cold: High Temperature Impact on Weight Loss
Hot weather isn’t practical in your weight loss effort, although it may seem to work initially. Heat compromises your body’s ability to burn calories long-term, making you less likely to lose weight. However, still, a gap needs some filling when factoring in food and digestion and the process’s energy production rate when it’s hot.
When it’s hot, your temperature goes down, and that’s because the body tries to regulate your inner body temperature by minimizing heat-generating functions, which include digestion. You’re more likely to register significant weight loss when it’s hot, not because of the weather’s influence but due to the diminished capacity to eat.
More controversy that needs addressing includes hot weather’s propensity to make men hungrier, as one publication states. However, the focus of this controversy isn’t entirely on temperature but on sunlight and how it triggers the release of the hunger-triggering hormone ghrelin. Scientists are currently assessing whether this mechanism may cause weight gain or weight loss.
Debunking the Myths Behind Weight Loss and Weather
While there’s a link between weight loss and weather, a few myths behind this theme overcomplicate the relationship. But we’ve listed some typical misconceptions you should be more aware of.
Myth: You can lose weight in a hot or cold environment.
Reality: While being in a hot or cold environment may help you burn some extra calories, it is not a guaranteed way to lose weight. Weight loss requires a combination of a few healthy eating habits, regular exercise, and a calorie deficit.
Myth: You burn more calories in cold weather because your body must work hard to stay warm.
Reality: While it’s true that your body burns more calories in cold weather to maintain its core temperature, the amount of extra calories burned is relatively small and unlikely to impact weight loss significantly.
Myth: You should avoid exercising in hot weather because it’s dangerous.
Reality: While taking precautions when exercising in hot weather to prevent dehydration and heat exhaustion is essential, it is generally safe to exercise in moderate heat. Some studies have suggested that exercising in the heat can improve athletic performance and increase calorie burn.
Myth: Avoid drinking cold water because it slows your metabolism.
Reality: Drinking cold water may slightly increase your metabolism for a short period, but the effect is not significant enough to impact weight loss.
Myth: You can’t lose weight in humid weather.
Reality: While it can be uncomfortable to exercise in humid weather, losing weight through healthy eating habits and exercise is still possible.
What Temperature Helps You Lose Weight?
While there’s no “magic” temperature for weight loss, colder temperatures mostly resonate with your weight loss goals. That means you’ll likely shed a few fat pounds when in cold weather than in hot areas.
Cold weather exposes your body to modestly extreme temperatures, challenging your body to activate BAT and heat production. That also triggers your metabolism and you’re likely to burn more fat and calories.
There has been a consensus on which between cold and hot weather facilitates weight loss more. And while the vast majority of scholars gravitate toward cold weather being more effective, hot temperatures still have a short-term impact. Ideally, cooler temperatures of about 230 C, which are marginally below room temperature can help trigger your weight loss mechanisms. But you don’t need to expose yourself for long, but rather, for a few seconds or minutes.
Is It Safe and Effective to Rely on Cold Weather as the Primary Weight Loss Method?
While exposure to cold temperatures may increase energy expenditure and potentially contribute to weight loss, it is not a sustainable or healthy approach to weight loss on its own. Relying on temperature as the primary weight loss method may lead to several health risks, including hypothermia, frostbite, and cold-related injuries.
Additionally, prolonged exposure to cold temperatures may increase hunger, leading to overeating and potentially leading to weight gain instead of weight loss. To achieve and maintain a healthy weight, it’s important to adopt a comprehensive approach that includes healthy eating habits, regular physical activity, and lifestyle changes that can be maintained over the long term.
Consultation with a healthcare professional and a registered dietitian can help in developing an effective and safe weight management plan that fits your individual needs and goals.
You have an incredible chance of losing weight in cold weather than in hot weather. While you may initially appear like burning calories when in hot weather, the rate usually declines and in the long-term. But while you may rely on weather (especially hot weather) to lose weight, you should understand that it’s not always sufficient, and you must pair this weight loss mechanism with other techniques, including dieting, regular physical activity, and changes in lifestyle.
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