Does thinking burn calories? I’ve often wondered about that, and today I came across a Q&A article in New Scientist on that very topic.
According to behavioral neuroscientist Ewan McNay, who has conducted research in this area,
“A rough calculation suggests that thinking hard about a task for 30 minutes might burn about 1/30th of a gram of fat. Thinking is not likely to turn an intellectual couch potato into a lean machine.”
Roger Hicks puts it even more succinctly:
“…it appears that the thinking part of brain function… consumes a relatively small amount of extra energy and is therefore of little use in weight loss-unless, of course, some of that thinking is aimed at producing exercise.”