Cold Office Spaces Can Lead to Weight Gain
Blame those extra pounds on the thermastat
With millions of Americans vaccinated against COVID-19, many who have worked from home over the past year will be heading back into the office. Adjusting to new routines is challenging and can affect our health and fitness. We’ve been more sedentary or more active, gained weight or dropped pounds.
As part of my work as a biomedical engineer, I study how physical factors influence human metabolism. This includes height and weight, gravity – and air temperature. My research colleagues and I have found that living or working in a cool environment for extended periods can lower core body temperature. That decreases metabolic rate–how fast we burn calories–and commonly causes weight gain.
Maintaining Core Body Temperature
Humans are homeotherms–that is, we maintain a relatively constant core body temperature. Specifically, we keep our body temperature in the range of 97 F to 101 F even in cool environments. Three different types of metabolic activity keep our body warm.
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