The mountains have increased in height

Losing weight: Study: You can lose weight in the mountains without doing any sport.

Fresh mountain air is often associated with hearty and high-calorie food - but the Alm shouldn't be fattening up after all. On the contrary: According to a new study by the Ludwig Maximilians University of Munich (LMU), overweight people should be able to lose weight better in the mountain air. And all without a diet. If you don't want to start an elaborate slimming program, you can make do with this or other little weight loss tricks.

Mountain air is said to have a positive effect on weight

Study leader Doctor Rainald Fischer and his colleagues Beatus Buchzik and Martin Karras suspected that longer stays in the mountain air had a positive effect on weight. To show this connection, they carried out an extraordinary study: 20 test persons suffering from the metabolic syndrome were asked to spend a week on an alpine pasture at an altitude of 2,700 meters.

Lose weight without diet

None of the study participants were supposed to be on a diet that week, but they all carried a special accessory: an oxygen cylinder. Half of the participants received normal air, just like they were given in the valley. The other half inhaled the oxygen-poor mountain air. Daily blood draws, weight and blood pressure measurements should investigate the thesis.

Two kilos in a week

The result is surprising: the control group that breathed normal air lost an average of two kilograms less than the group that breathed oxygen-poor air. Study leader Fischer sees this as a great success: "This confirms the theory that the lack of oxygen leads to weight loss. We can therefore confirm that if you want to lose weight, you should go up." The researchers attributed the effect to an increased basal metabolic rate. According to Fischer, the body apparently consumes more calories at high altitudes in order to be able to compensate for the lower oxygen content in the air.

New treatment options for overweight people in prospect

"The positive effects on blood pressure and the overall increased performance continued for about four weeks after we returned to the valley," reports Fischer. In a next step, the team wants to research whether the mountain effect can also be simulated in the valley. If that is the case, a completely new form of treatment for overweight people could be derived from it - and it is still good for the soul!

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