Freezing Cold? No Worries! New Study Shows Shivering May Count As Exercise

Shivering1(PCM) Throughout most of the country we have been dealing with freezing cold temperatures, snow, and all kinds of nasty weather conditions this winter, however a new study shows that all that shivering may indeed have some health benefits.

According to new research, shivering triggers a response in muscles that is equivalent that of exercise. The medical journal “Cell Metabolism” published a report that claims that the muscles of shivering people triggers the release of a hormone that activates brown fat. Brown fat just so happens to be a type of fat burns energy to generate heat.

Researchers hope that one day they can find a way to activate the same response by using a drug and create a medicine that could speed up energy expenditure in much the same way.

A hormone called irisin is incredibly critical for this process. The researchers first had particpants in the study ride a bike as hard as they could for a period of time and when the finished the researchers found that the muscle contractions from working out and breaking a sweat on the bike released the hormone irisin.

The same participants were then told to lie in bed under a blanket that was pumped with ice-cold water. Many of the participants began shivering.  When they were tested it turned out their their bodies were producing the irisin as well caused by the similar muscle contractions experienced.

The study suggests that both shivering and muscle contraction stimulate the release of this hormone. Irisin then turns on brown fat, and allows it to burn energy to produce heat.

Just when you thought there was no benefit to all this cold weather! No research has been linked to show that shivering aids with weight loss, but hey, it’s definitely an interesting study.

Recent Posts

Popular Subjects