Recent Study Reveals Watching Horror Movies Can Help You Lose Weight

source: PromoNews

Most of us are familiar with the feeling we experience while watching a really scary horror movie. The suspense has our pulses quickening, our palms sweating, and sometimes, we might even let out a scream! You know that horror movies make you feel a certain type of way, but did you know that watching them can actually help you to burn calories?

source: iStock

A recent study conducted by the University of Westminster revealed that watching horror movies can be linked to losing weight (as long as you’re not knee-deep in snacks, that is). Researchers noted that participants experienced an elevated heart rate, increased oxygen intake, and increased carbon dioxide output while watching a 90-minute horror film. All of these physical responses to the movie are also associated with burning calories.

“Each of the 10 films tested sent pulses racing, sparking an increase in the heart rate of the case studies,” explained Dr. Richard Mackenzie, senior lecturer and cell metabolism and physiology specialist at the University of Westminster. “As the pulse quickens and blood pumps around the body faster, the body experiences a surge in adrenaline. It is this release of fast-acting adrenaline, produced during short bursts of intense stress (or in this case, brought on by fear), which is known to lower the appetite, increase the basal metabolic rate, and ultimately burn a higher level of calories,” he continued.

source: IFC Center

When your heart rate is consistently high, you are in the process of burning calories. That’s why at the end of a horror movie, you may notice that you were breathing heavily, sweating, and are somewhat exhausted when it’s over — kind of like the physical responses you experience after exercising. Although horror movies should not be substituted for actual physical exercise, you can now rest assured that the thriller you’re watching is also helping to burn a few calories!