Questions for ‘Is your home chilly? This might just be healthy’


Turning the thermostat down just a bit may leave people feeling “frigid” — until their bodies adjust. But in short order, the body can boost its metabolism, now burning calories at a healthier rate.


To accompany feature “Is your home chilly? This might just be healthy”


Before Reading: 

1.         What temperature is your home, and how much does that temperature vary from one season to another?

2.         What do you think is the healthiest indoor temperature, and why do you think that?

During Reading: 

1.     What is metabolism?

2.     What is a review paper and what strengths can it offer over other types of research papers?

3.     What is brown fat and how does it differ from white fat?

4.     How might being mildly too warm help the body maintain its internal temperature, as described in the story?

5.     What is type 2 diabetes?

6.     What is insulin?

7.     How important was the change in “insulin sensitivity” after spending time in a cool environment — and how does it compare to other strategies to control diabetes?

8.     Based on what you read in the story, is it better to remain in environments that have a stable temperature or not?

After Reading:

1.     Choose to do some additional research on rates in your region of either overweight/obesity or type 2 diabetes (select statistics that might be available for your city, state or nation). Compile a list of at least five costs or types of harm associated with the disease or with complications of these conditions. How might changing indoor temperatures affect those costs or impacts? Develop a poster to identify the tradeoffs of home environments that are normal for your region or cooler.

2.     After reading the story, what more would you like to know in terms of data related to health and indoor temperatures? Design a test, survey or experiment to try and answer your question? What would it look like? What would it cost? How much time would it take? How many people would you need as subjects or how many times would you need to repeat the test to have the findings be scientifically sound? (Hint: You should be able to find much of the information to guide you here.)