Fat Prevents Chilling Weight Loss: Stegosaurus's Solution
Ray Cronise, a former NASA scientist, has used exposure to low temperatures to boost his metabolism and lose weight, but many scientific studies suggest those who would most benefit from chilling weight loss must overcome the large obstacle of their insulative fat layers. One of the primary responses to cold temperature is the narrowing of blood vessels to reduce circulation to cold parts of the body. In the obese, vasoconstriction combined with thick thermal insulating fat minimizes heat loss maintaining core body temperature without affecting metabolism even under prolonged exposure to a cold. There are several methods the obese can be use to increase heat loss, but each carry risks that must be carefully considered.
Moving water transfers heat much faster than air, rapidly decreasing core body temperature even in the obese. Cold showers or cold swimming are effective ways to lower body temperature, but both these techniques also decrease extremity temperatures. Reduced blood flow and lower cell temperatures in cold hands and feet can result in cell death and poor healing. Even in room temperature water, the rapid rate of heat loss in submerged extremities can result in blisters, open sores, and necrosis. Safer chilling solutions avoid excessive extremity cooling, but carry other health risks.
Vasodilating drugs widen blood vessels increasing blood flow to the skin surface increasing extremity temperature and improving heat loss despite fat insulation. While ethanol is a well known vasodilant, the caloric content of alcoholic beverages makes ethanol unsuitable for weight loss. Low calorie vasodilants like Viagra, Cialis, and Levitra are more appropriate for cold induced weight loss. Vasodilants can be taken prior to cold swimming to maintain extremity temperatures and circulation to further boost heat loss, but care must be taken to avoid excessive cooling. Human core body temperature must remain in a very narrow range for essential metabolic processes to occur. Vasodilants will interfere with the body's ability to thermoregulate. Cold swimming while taking vasodilants increases the risk hypothermia.
Unwanted excessive cooling can be avoided while still bypassing fat insulation and maintaining surface temperature by lowering blood temperature directly. Circulating blood outside the body during dialysis decreases blood temperature stimulating metabolic heat generation. For obese not currently undergoing expensive hemodialysis, blood cooling devices similar to a stegosaurus's cooling plates may soon become popular as a weightloss aid.