Posted on Mar 30, 2017, 6 a.m.
Study finds that combating obesity and type 2 diabetes can be as simple as opening a bedroom window in the evening and cooling the body by a couple degrees.
An Oxford University researcher has found that combating obesity and type 2 diabetes can be as simple as opening a bedroom window at night. The presence of a cool breeze seems to improve health, by lowering the bedroom's temperature by a couple degrees. These findings were released on the heels of a Dutch scientist's discovery of a link between global warming and the ever-increasing diabetes epidemic.
Why Opening a Bedroom Window is Beneficial for Health
Research indicates that as little as a single degree centigrade increase in environmental temperature has the potential to cause a whopping 100,000 new cases of diabetes in the United States every year. This occurs as the human body burns less brown fat to maintain a comfortable temperature, causing sensitivity to insulin and consequential weight gain.
The study's results lend credence to the already-existing “keep cool” theory for diabetes and obesity reduction. Professor Grossman from Oxford University spearheaded the research. He indicates there is “encouraging” evidence that reducing body temperature, even if only by a couple degrees, improves the health of those who suffer from diabetes. He states that living in a comparably cold environment is helpful to increasing sensitivity to insulin and the prevention of diabetes.
Grossman also made it clear that adequate sleep is helpful in warding off diabetes and obesity. However, most people are aware of the fact that peaceful sleep in which REM is attained benefits the body and mind. Few are aware that sleeping in a cool bedroom with the window open to allow the night breeze in is also helpful.
Additional Evidence That Cooler Temperatures Boost Health
Scientists analyzed temperature data and diabetes cases in the United States as well as the Virgin Islands, Guam and Puerto Rico. It was determined that a single degree centigrade bump in temperature heightened the incidence of type 2 diabetes by 0.314 per 1,000 individuals.
A study performed by academicians at the Netherlands' Maastricht University Medical Centre indicates that lowering the thermostat to a range between 15 C and 17 C for a couple hours each day will help reduce weight. The colder temperatures force the body to burn calories in order to stay warm. In fact, achieving a bedroom temperature that is similar to the temperature outside seems to benefit human health. It all boils down to the fact that exposure to cold temperatures heightens metabolic rate. This is the rate at which calories are burned. Cold temperatures catalyze the metabolic rate by 30 percent, allowing for the burning of 400 calories per hour.
Details About Human Body Fat
The human body has two distinct types of fat: brown and white. White body fat holds calories. Brown body fat is converted to energy and heat. Keeping brown fat cool is conducive to its stimulation and subsequent weight loss. Though there is a strong connection between diabetes and a cold body, the notion that such a link is tied to climate change is highly unlikely.
The Utility of the Findings
It is certainly interesting to note that a cooler bedroom can reduce the odds of obesity and type 2 diabetes. However, the planet is warming and it would be impossible for the majority of people to migrate to areas with cold climates. Yet it is certainly possible for people to turn down the thermostat at night or crack open a window on fall, spring and winter nights to let the cool breeze in.
BMJ Open Diabetes Research & Care Diabetes incidence and glucose intolerance prevalence increase with higher outdoor temperature, Lisanne L Blauw1,2, N Ahmad Aziz3, Martijn R Tannemaat3, C Alexander Blauw4, Anton J de Craen5, Hanno Pijl1, Patrick C N Rensen1,6