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Answered 2011-11-23 18:12:07

Your body generates heat when it is cold by shivering. This muscle fasiculation produces heat, just like jogging or walking does. It is one of the bodies mechanisms for survival in extreme situations, in addition to dilating the blood vessles in the skin, however it is not a good way to lose weight. (Note non extreme alternatives in next paragraph below) The risks of hyothermia, frostbite, shock, etc. are not worth it. Losing weight is very simple, you must burn more calories than you take in, so either eat less or be more active or both to lose weight.

YET, you do not have to do extreme temperature changes to cause the body to work harder to maintain your core body temperature, and burn more calories doing it. A cold shower hitting your neck and upper back for 10 minutes at a temperature of 72 degrees is enough to make your body burn lots of calories to maintain warmth. OR sitting back and watching TV with a large ice pack hitting your neck and back (with a T-Shirt in between) for 20 minutes will do just a good a job. Though extremes in this area could be simply a 20 min ice bath as well (but the ice pack or cold shower are 60% as effective as an ice bath).

Swimmers are thin and muscular due to the cold water drawing off the heat from their bodies and the body compensating for it.

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