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Can turning down your thermostat help you lose weight?

5:30 PM, Jan 26, 2011   |    comments
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A study out of University College London suggests keeping a hot household during the cold winter months doesn't allow our bodies to work to stay warm. That means we don't burn as many calories as we could if we got a little chilly.

Part of the reason you burn more calories in cold temperatures is something called brown fat. This type of fat burns energy to create heat and is only activated when you're cold. We have plenty of it when we are babies, but it wasn't until recently that scientist found we also have small amounts even as adults. And since brown fat burns energy more efficiently to keep our bodies warm, having a lower thermostat and even small amounts of this brown fat means we burn more calories throughout the day.

Experts say keeping your thermostat below seventy and spending time being active outdoors can help you stay fit during the winter freeze.

They also say the theory about brown fat is interesting, but more research is needed before it can be considered as having a role in the obesity epidemic.

(KUSA-TV © 2011 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)

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