Have you ever felt your heart leap in the middle of a horror movie? For a few moments, it's thudding in your chest, your breathing speeds up, and you feel adrenaline rushing through your body.
It turns out, that is actually a good thing...and can even help you to lose weight.
Horror Movies = Burning Calories
A fascinating study was conducted by the University of Westminster into the effects of horror movies on your body. One of the side effects: the movies help you to burn calories.
Dr. Richard Mackenzie, who led the study, explained just how it happens:
"When your heart beats faster and your pulse speeds up as a result of the horror movie, your blood is pumped around your body faster. This causes your body to release a surge of adrenaline, the same adrenaline that is produced during a short burst of stress--such as the stress of lifting heavy weights, running for your life, etc.
"This surge of adrenaline helps to lower your appetite, increases your basal metabolic rate, and will ultimately lead to an increase in calorie burning."
Perhaps you've experienced this before: while watching a horror movie, your appetite is suddenly gone. Maybe you thought you weren't hungry because you've suffered through the gore of a victim being ripped apart by an alien monster or suffered through a hideous killer on the loose. In fact, you may not hungry because your body is telling you, "No time to eat! Got to run for my life!"
Watching horror movies won't just stop you from being hungry, but it will also give you a metabolism boost that will help you burn more calories.
Your average 90-minute horror movie will cause you to burn about 110 calories. That may not seem like a lot, but the fact that you're burning calories while sitting on the couch is definitely be an awesome side effect.
The Top Calorie-Burning Horror Films
So which horror movies are the best ones to watch? It's the ones that make you JUMP!
Horror movies that are more psychological in nature will still get your heart racing, but it's the ones that startle you that will really do the trick. The researchers at the University of Westminster conducted detailed research to find the movies that will help you to burn more calories, and they found the top 10:
The Shining: 184 calories
Jaws: 161 calories
The Exorcist: 158 calories
Alien: 152 calories
Saw: 133 calories
A Nightmare on Elm Street: 118 calories
Paranormal Activity: 111 calories
The Blair Witch Project: 105 calories
The Texas Chain Saw Massacre: 107 calories
[Rec]: 101 calories
And, in case you were wondering, comedies will also help you burn calories--though far fewer. The average person burns between 10 and 40 calories laughing for 15 minutes. It would take a lot of chuckling to match Jack Nicholson wielding an ax.
Some people get lucky and are born with fit, toned bodies. Andy Peloquin is not one of those people... Fitness has come hard for him, and he's had to work for it. His trials have led him to becoming a martial artist, an NFPT-certified fitness trainer, and a man passionate about exercise, diet and healthy living. He loves to exercise--he does so six days a week--and loves to share his passion for fitness and health with others.