Many people are challenged in the winter when it comes to weight loss. The cold weather, and darkness of the night setting in early, causes less motivation to exercise and an increased appetite in many of us. While it’s hard to imagine, the cold weather can increase our ability to lose weight in the winter months. Here’s how:

  • The cold weather releases a hormone to our bodies called irisin. While our bodies are made up of more brown fat cells as babies, these eventually change to sluggish white fat cells that store fat. During winter months, calorie burn is increased as irisin converts the stubborn white fat cells to active brown cells. This can add an additional calorie burn of 300 calories per day. Even if you have skipped your activity for the day, the effect of the hormone irisin on your body is equivalent to a thirty-minute jog. Now imagine the days you can keep up with your exercise routine.
  • The actual feeling of being chilly can also add to weight loss. Although we tend to enjoy being toasty and warm during the winter months, if you can tolerate a continual feeling of being chilly, this can increase your potential to lose weight. Although a few minutes a day doesn’t help, keeping your household temperature between 50-60 degrees will help. In addition, shivering produces muscle contractions that help as well.
  • Our metabolism also plays a big part in winter weight loss, because metabolism helps to keep us warm. As our metabolism works harder during the winter months, it helps us burn more calories.

While winter isn’t the ideal season for everyone, there are ways we can use it to benefit us as we continue our weight loss routine, or even just begin our journey. Do you best to practice healthy eating and stick to your regular workout routine during the winter months, as this will bring you the best results towards achieving your goal.