Let's play a game of Would you rather - would you a) like a long soak in a steaming hot bath or b) prefer a half hour walk after work. For anyone who answered a), this is the best news you're going to get all Monday: a study has found that hot baths burn as many calories as a half hour walk (roughly 126 cal) and lower blood sugar levels more effectively than intensive cycling, reports The Guardian. Win!

Conducted by Dr Steve Faulkner at England's Loughborough University, the study took 10 unfit men, fitted them with monitoring devices, then asked them to have a long hot bath, followed by a light meal. On the second day, the bath was replaced with vigorous cycling. The results showed that participants' blood sugar levels after eating were 10% lower on bath day than cycling day, which Dr Faulkner puts down to the heat shock proteins that the body releases in response to heat, as well as things like stress and exercise. In other words, while away the hours in a bubble bath and you'll be burning calories plus doing wonders for your blood sugar levels. Sounds pretty good to us. 

Are hot baths the secret to pre-summer weight loss?