Most people lament that they gain 3-5 kilos in the winter. And they blame it on wanting to indulge in fatty comfort food, decreased activity levels because it’s too cold to go out for a walk, and the desire to stay tucked into their warm blanket for a few extra hours on cold, foggy mornings. And by the time summer rolls around, they have accumulated more fat around the waist and on the hips.
Me….I have the opposite problem. I stay highly active during winters because it’s so much easier to exercise when the outdoor air is crisp and cool (and I love to layer up and go for long long walks) and while I gorge on nuts and dry fruits all winter long, I never seem to gain a single pound. Instead, I lose weight. And I am usually my slimmest when summer starts, enjoying my dresses and short shorts with confidence.
But by the time the heat (it’s been 46 deg C here) is at its peak and I find my everyday walks or jogs a chore because of the hot winds that blow round the clock, I start to notice that my waistline is slowly and steadily expanding. What the hell is happening? I am sweating all the time, so shouldn’t I be losing weight? I want to eat more salads and fruits and barely have any appetite for a large, fatty meal….so why am I gaining this weight?
This is why we gain weight in summers:
Your Metabolism Slows Down
Being exposed to extreme heat can cause you to lose your stamina. It is said that your metabolism is faster during the cold winter months than in hot summer days. During the winter when your body temperature is higher than the temperature outside, maintaining your core body temperature requires energy which translates into calories your body has to burn to create heat. That’s cold-induced thermogenesis. However, during the amount of energy spent heating your body is at its minimum. This means you burn less calories during the summer heating your body….and sweating doesn’t mean you’re burning calories.
You Are Not Moving Enough
If you prefer to workout outdoors like me, you know that exercise is one thing and getting too much exposure to dangerously strong ultraviolent light is another. Not going out for a run because it is screaming hot during the summer being an interruption to your exercise routine is not that uncommon. Just moving a little may cause your body to overheat and you to think start thinking, “Maybe it’s a good time to take a break about now.” This sort of movement lowers your physical activity level starts to add up over time in terms of the number of calories you burn daily throughout the summer due to physical activity that is exercise.
Ok, I’ll confess….the weighing machine doesn’t show any weight increase, but my waistline is definitely thicker and I feel bloated Why? Sweating causes you to lose potassium in your body, which is why hot sweaty summers are associated with edema leg swelling. Having too many cold beverages increases your chances of getting stuck with leg swelling and a bloated face. Water retention makes you look fat and is the cause of unwanted cellulite. Moderating your salt intake while working on getting more potassium in your body and help get rid of edema swelling before its too late.
Losing Out On Essential Vitamins
Fluids are not the only thing you lose during perspiration. As you sweat, vitamin and minerals get snatched away from your body. These vitamins and minerals include nutrition that your lipid metabolism uses to help you burn fat. Without these nutrients, your body’s fat burning capacity is impaired. Vitamin B1 and vitamin B2 are water soluble vitamins that as your sweat get sent out of your body through your sweat glands. The B in B vitamins may as wells stand for burning fat because B vitamins are used by your body to help you burn fat. Not getting enough B vitamins in your diet can severely damage any chance you have of burning fat through exercise.
Let’s Have A Chilled One!
When you’re thirsty, and water doesn’t sound appealing, a cold glass of lemonade or sweetened ice tea seems like the perfect solution. But these drinks can be major sugar bombs.When you want to drink something sweet, dilute 100% fruit juice with equal parts water. And then there is chilled wine, a chilled pint of beer, Sangria’s and Margaritas….they are all adding to your caloric intake!
You Tend To Stay Up Late
Longer days mean staying up, which can often lead to late-night snacking. I know I do it. Instead of grabbing cookies or chips, leave containers of cut-up fruit or nonfat Greek yogurt in the fridge that you can nosh on. I also love cucumber and carrot sticks to munch on at night.