Quick Navigation

Cold Exposure

The act of exposing yourself to the cold and feeling the cold and, gritting your teeth through the discomfort. It actually does appear to burn fat in an attempt to warm the body, and may carry some health benefits.

Our evidence-based analysis on cold exposure features 22 unique references to scientific papers.

Research analysis led by .
Reviewed by
Examine.com Team
Last Updated:

Summary of Cold Exposure

Primary information, health benefits, side effects, usage, and other important details

Cold exposure is a technique in which a person voluntarily expose themselves to temperatures below their comfort level. This voluntary deviation from the body's ideal temperature causes reactions in the body to maintain the internal temperature; some of these reactions are increased metabolic rate to produce heat, which results in weight loss.

The benefits seen are long term (adaptive), and thus not likely to occur with one or two isolated ventures. They are directly proportional (to a degree) to the variance between comfort level temperature and the temperature one partakes in.

Get trusted answers to health questions that matter to you

Getting an Examine.com subscription makes it easy for you to stay informed and understand the latest nutrition research.

If you’re overwhelmed by all the possibilities of supplementation and want step-by-step instructions on what supplements to take (how much, when, and in what combinations), then the Examine.com Supplement Guides are perfect for you.

Your support keeps us 100% independent, so that we never have a conflict of interest.


How to Take

Medical Disclaimer

Recommended dosage, active amounts, other details

Benefits have been seen at 6°C degrees below comfort level, which is typically 16°C (60.8 ºF).

Greater metabolic losses are seen with greater intensities of cold exposure.

Things to Note

Is a Form Of

Primary Function:

Also Known As

Non-shivering thermogenesis, Shivering

Do Not Confuse With

Heat Treatment

Goes Well With

  • Being lean and well-muscled

Cold exposure is quite cold, and wearing a sweater defeats the purpose.

Get our free 5-day course on the essentials of supplementation.

At Examine.com, our incentives line up with yours — getting unbiased information. That's why we don’t sell any advertising or supplements.

Join over 250,000 people who have learned about effective versus overrated supplements, tips for buying supplements, and how to combine supplements for safety and efficacy.

Click here to see all 22 references.