By Joanna McClanahan of Ramblin’ Mama
There is nothing better than a hot bath where I can finally escape, relax, and soothe my mind and body.
Well, it’s relaxing for approximately 30 seconds before one of my kids needs something. After that, it’s mostly just yelling back through the wall, listening to muffled fighting, and praying that they don’t manage to break down the door.
And while my baths aren’t quite as relaxing as they once were, it looks like we all have a good excuse to hide away from our kids for an hour, because they can have the same health benefits as exercise. Without the annoying “exercise” part.
According to a Loughborough University study, participants either took hour-long baths at 104 °F (40 °C) or rode bikes for an hour.
Participants were then measured for the calories they burned and, even though the hot bath group didn’t burn as many calories as the bicycle group, researchers noticed that by increasing core body temperature, participants who spent an hour in a hot bath did burn as many calories as they would during a 30-minute walk or light jog (almost 100 calories).
They were also monitored for blood sugar control and the bath group had slightly lower blood sugar peaks after eating, compared to the cyclists.
“The overall blood sugar response to both conditions was similar, but peak blood sugar after eating was about 10% lower when participants took a hot bath compared with when they exercised. This suggests that repeated passive heating may contribute to reducing chronic inflammation, which is often present with long-term diseases, such as type 2 diabetes,” said Faulkner.
So there are a few more reasons to (try to) escape your family and take more hot baths.
Just don’t forget the headphones.