For the individual new to weight loss, healthy eating and exercise, there simply is no question too big or too small. Consider the following list of top calorie related questions people are curious about. Some of them might surprise you! Does crying burn calories? When an individual is experiencing emotional stress that leads to crying, an elevated heart rate isn’t uncommon. The tears shed over a sliced onion are very different from emotional tears; emotional tears have a completely different chemical composition. During these moments, the number of calories burned by the heart tissue could increase slightly. Does tanning burn calories? The body’s response to warmer temperatures is to relax the muscles, lower adrenaline production and lower the metabolic rate. When your body is at a resting state (this includes soaking up some sun poolside), your body requires a minimal level of energy to maintain basic bodily functions – also known as your basal metabolic rate (BMR). When the body is warm, this rate is reduced even further. Thus, sunbathing is not at all useful for weight loss. How many calories do squats burn? Used both as a weightlifting and callisthenic exercise, squats are an incredibly popular addition to any workout. Not only does it target all the muscles in your lower body, but it also burns calories. Squats can be performed with bodyweight, dumbbells or a barbell. The number of calories burned will depend on the individual’s bodyweight, the intensity of the workout, the type of squats (bodyweight, barbell squats, dumbbell squats, etc.) and the duration. Does stretching burn calories? Similar to sunbathing, stretching does not burn the number of calories an intense weightlifting session, an hour at the track or a HIIT training program. Static stretching – stretching muscles while they are at rest – will only burn the calories your body would at a resting state (the minimum). Dynamic stretches, however, may burn a few more calories than static stretches. Dynamic stretching involves momentum (arm circles, hip circles, bodyweight lunges, etc.) and is typically used before high-intensity training sessions. Does thinking burn calories? Exercise isn’t just for the body; mental health is equally important. However, even the hardest mental activities – like a complex crossword or Sudoku puzzle – do not demand the same energy levels a physical activity does. Even though studies have shown that fatigue is associated with mental effort that was not for amusement or pleasure (consider the obligatory SAT), there is still no evidence that thinking harder burns more calories. How many calories does chewing gum burn? According to research published by the New England Journal of Medicine, chewing gum burns approximately 11 calories an hour. If your current goal is weight loss, burning 11 calories an hour may not appear to be very helpful. However, some experts estimate that people who chewed gum for at least 45 minutes between meals were less hungry than those who didn’t; thus, helping them snack less and stick to their diet plan. So, the next time you’re in the checkout line, go ahead and snag that pack of gum. If you’d like to see more of these frequently asked questions, keep an eye out for part two.