Birmingham, Ala. (CBS Atlanta) — A warmer work environment may lead to lower food intake, preliminary research suggests.

University of Alabama at Birmingham researchers evaluated young adults exposed to temperatures above normal temperatures (68 degrees Fahrenheit to 72 degrees Fahrenheit) in an office environment, as reported by Medical Xpress.

Twenty individuals were asked at random to perform routine office work over a two-hour period in either a normal temperature environment  at 66 degrees Fahrenheit to 68 degrees Fahrenheit, or at temperatures above 78 degrees Fahrenheit to 80 degrees Fahrenheit.

Researchers found that for every 1 degree Celsius increase participants ate 85.9 fewer calories. The study controlled for variables like gender and BMI.

“This suggests that decreased food intake in the experimental (warmer) environment is potentially mediated through thermoregulatory mechanisms,” Molly C. Bernhard, MPH, pre-doctoral fellow in the Nutrition Obesity Research Center and pre-doctoral candidate in the Department of Environmental Health Sciences, said.

Researchers are currently working to strengthen the study’s findings by examining the effects of longer exposure with more participants.


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