Research has found that simply lowering your thermostat can promote better sleep and have positive metabolic effects.
According to a study at Cornell University Medical College, temperature can have a direct effect on sleep quality. When looking at participants of all ages, the researchers found that a decrease in core body temperature can not only increase the likelihood of sleep initiation, but also facilitate entry into deeper stages of it. These findings even apply to individuals who typically have difficulty falling asleep. A study at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine found that keeping a “cool head” by wearing cooling caps to bed helped insomniacs sleep almost as well as people without sleep problems.
Even more groundbreaking are the results of the recent ICEMAN (Impact of Chronic Cold Exposure in Humans) study at the National Institutes of Health in Washington. In the study, five healthy men were kept in temperature controlled rooms while researchers monitored them. Based on their research, the results found that living in cooler temperatures can lower blood sugar and reduce risk for diabetes and other metabolic problems.
This is achieved through an increase in the body’s levels of brown fat. While the name might sound bad, brown fat is actually referred to as “good fat” because it helps the body burn calories and dispose of excess blood sugar. It’s been found that individuals with higher levels of brown fat tend to be leaner and have lower blood sugar levels. After four weeks at a cool (but not cold) 66 degrees, the ICEMAN participants had almost doubled their volumes of brown fat.
What all of this scientific evidence says is that, in just a month, you could be looking better and feeling better simply by lowering your thermostat.