There are many reasons to watch horror movies, and some studies try to see why and how it can affect us. We usually focus on the mental and psychological reasons that explain our attraction to horror movies and their possible effects, one way or another. But it turns out, at least if you ask British researchers, that scary films can also contribute to our health – and even cause weight loss. So does watching horror movies burn calories? How many calories do you burn watching a horror movie? And what are the most “Healthy” movies out there? Here’s all the reasons that explain why you too should (maybe) go on a killer diet.
Do Horror Movies Burn Calories? And Why?
As far as we know, there has been only one study so far that examines whether horror movies can contribute to weight loss. In 2012, researchers from the University of Westminster in London examined exactly the consequences of watching horror films. The participants in the study, commissioned by the film rental company LOVEFilm, watched ten horror films of all time, including some classic ones. The researchers examined various parameters that can contribute to weight loss, with an emphasis on heart rate, carbon dioxide emissions, and oxygen consumption. The data was measured before, during, and after the movie, to see if there is a change we can be attributed to the films.
The research findings could explain why lying in front of the TV can sometimes be a good idea. The researchers saw that horror movies resulted in increased heart rate and increased heart rates. These changes increase the levels of adrenaline in the body, and may have an effect on weight: adrenaline, as is known, contributes to stimulating the rate of metabolism, and accelerates the burning of calories. It can even cause satiety and reduce the feeling of hunger. The scare scenes (“jump scares”) have the best weight loss potential.
Trying To Lose Weight? These Are The Movies You Should Watch
If you accept the findings that watching horror movies burn calories, you should know which movies are more effective in this manner. Unsurprisingly, horror films should be successful in terms of movie-making, scares, and interest. The study showed that the most “fatty” movie is Stanley Kubrick’s “The Shining” from 1980, which according to the findings may cause the burning of no less than 184 calories on average – the amount measured for a little more than half an hour of walking or a quarter of an hour-long run.
In second place is “Jaws” by Steven Spielberg, which may burn 161 calories on average. “The Exorcist” by William Friedkin from 1973, already crowned in several variations as the scariest film of all time, came in third place. The list also includes representation of several films from the current millennium, including “Paranormal Activity” and “Saw.”
Here’s the full list, showing how horror movies make you lose weight (maybe):
- “The Shining” (1980) – 184 calories
- “Jaws” (1975) – 161 calories
- “The Exorcist” (1973) – 158 calories
- “Alien” (1979) – 152 calories
- “Saw” (2004) – 133 calories
- “A Nightmare on Elm Street” (1984) – 118 calories
- “Paranormal Activity” (2007) – 111 calories
- “The Blair Witch Project” (1999) – 105 calories
- “Chainsaw Texas Massacre” (1974) – 107 calories
- “[REC]” (2007) – 101 calories
It is perhaps unnecessary to point out that the study carried out is the first of its kind, does not include a study population that is too broad to make it possible to conclude the entire population, and may also include intervening variables that explain the results: for example, the characteristics of the subjects or the specific films examined.
Watching a horror comedy? It Can Help Reduce Weight!
Over the years there have been additional studies that can explain the nutritional aspect of horror films or films as a whole. If you like to watch horror comedies or horror movies that are so bad they’re funny, this may increase your calorie burn even more. For example, a study found that laughing for example 10-15 minutes every day is likely to contribute to the burning of up to 40 calories. The reason is that laughter causes an increase in heart rate and metabolism, effects that last a little longer than just the burst of laughter. Here too, of course, many more studies are needed so that far-reaching conclusions can be reached.
Our last advice for you is, of course, to avoid eating popcorn while watching horror movies – especially when it’s prepared in an unhealthy way. The truth is that popcorn got the name of one of the biggest “enemies” of our weight, but the devil may not be so bad. In practice, popcorn is made from corn kernels, which may contribute to the feeling of satiety, and in its natural form (without oil) contains few calories – so it is a snack that is considered healthier than most types of chocolates and sweets. if you Prepare popcorn by yourself, without additives such as oil, butter, or salt, you will consume only about 30 calories per cup and you’ll get some important nutrients. The problem is that the popcorn in the commercial form, including the bags we find in the marketing chains and the buckets sold in the cinemas, already includes a significant amount of calories due to those unhealthy additives: from a few hundred calories to about 1,000 calories in the worst case. In other words: you should avoid industrialized popcorn, or just choose in advance gorry horror movies that will suppress your appetite.
To sum it up, the answer to the question can horror movies make you lose weight may be positive, at least according to one research and other studies. So should you give up a subscription to the gym, and base our diet on a subscription to Netflix? Not sure. In any case, we recommend a healthy and active lifestyle, avoiding prolonged exposure to TV, and gaining continuous sleep as much as possible, with a minimum of nightmares and sleep paralysis. But hey, you might have a nice excuse for those who ask why you watch horror movies all night.