How Many Calories Do I Lose by Talking?

Close-up of a man talking on a mobile phone
An hour of gossip burns calories. (Image: Ingram Publishing/Ingram Publishing/Getty Images)

Caloric burn is determined by multiple factors. Metabolic demands indicate how many calories are burned to support organ and physical health. Any additional caloric burn is determined by age, weight and activity. Even sedentary activities, such as talking, boast a surprisingly substantial caloric burn.

Significance of Gender

Males and females burn calories at a different metabolic rate. Males tend to enjoy higher metabolism which allows for higher caloric burn, even when the activity and age of participants are identical. For example, a 35-year-old female weighing 185 lbs. will burn 6 fewer calories per hour of conversation on the phone while sitting on a chair than a 35-year-old male weighing 185 lbs.

Misconceptions of Weight

People with a higher weight burn more calories talking than their thinner friends. It takes more calories to support greater body mass. A 35-year-old woman who weighs 135 lbs. will burn 46 pounds per hour of easy conversation, compared to a woman of identical age weighing 185 lbs., who will burn 53 calories per hour of easy conversation.

Effects of Age

Age has a significant effect on caloric burn while talking. According to authors Steve Vickery and Marilyn Moffat, no matter what gender, younger people have a quicker metabolism that allows them to burn more calories while talking, or doing any other activity, than their older counterparts. A young man of 18 years and 150 lbs. will burn 57 calories per hour of talking, while an older gentleman of 80 years of the same height and weight will burn 43 calories for the same amount of talking.

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