Results indicate people may consume more calories after exercising in cold water, according to Lesley White, a UF researcher who designed the study to better understand why aquatic exercise is often less successful than equal amounts of jogging or cycling for people who want to lose weight.

"It's possible that individuals who exercise in cooler water may have an exaggerated energy intake following exercise, which may be a reason why they don't lose as much weight,” said White, an assistant professor in the College of Health and Human Performance. "So it may not be the exercise itself that causes the problem because you can match the exercise energy expenditure; rather it's the increased eating after the exercise is over.”

"Water exercise is an excellent activity for many people, particularly those with joint disorders, thermal regulatory problems and balance or coordination difficulties,” she said. "However, an earlier study reported that women who swam did not lose as much weight as those who jogged or cycled.”

The study found the students used a similar amount of energy during the exercises, 517 calories in the cold water and 505 in the warm water. Students expended 123 calories while resting.

After each exercise session and the rest period, the students were allowed into a room to measure their blood pressure and heart rates. They were left to rest for one hour in the same room and had free access to a standard assortment of food of known caloric values. However, the students didn't know their caloric intake was going to be measured.

"We found that during the recovery period when the subjects had access to an assortment of foods that significantly more calories were eaten after exercise in cold water compared to exercise in warm water or at rest,” White said.

Caloric intake after exercise in cold water was 44 percent higher than exercise in warm water and 41 percent higher than in the resting periods.

MEDICA.de; Source: University of Florida