Why is human body temperature decreasing?

A new study by a team of scientists from Stanford University School of Medicine shows that human body temperature in the US has dropped over the past century.

By cross-checking multiple health records, the researchers concluded that the average 21st century human body temperature is about 0.3 degrees Celsius lower in women and 0.6 degrees Celsius lower in men. compared to the 19th century.

In 1851, German physician Carl Reinhold August Wunderlich determined the average human temperature to be 37 degrees Celsius. Since then, this temperature has been so widely used that it plays a role in determining human health. People.

Why is human body temperature decreasing?
The average human temperature is decreasing due to environmental factors.

However, this average temperature does not appear to be accurate over time as people have been getting colder over the years.

Julie Parsonnet, Professor of Medicine at Stanford decided to find out what causes the human body to cool down.

The team looked at temperature data from three historical periods. These include military service records, medical records and pensions of Union Army veterans of the American Civil War from 1826-1930. The second set of records are periodic health and nutrition surveys collected from 1971-1975. The final dataset comes from adult Stanford Healh Care patients between 2007-2017.

A total of 677,423 temperature measurements were used for the calculation. The results found that 21st century men have an average body temperature 0.6 degrees Celsius lower than those born in the early 19th century. Meanwhile, modern women have a decrease in body temperature 0.3 degrees. C.

Thus, scientists found that humans have decreased by 0.3 degrees Celsius per century . However, because there are many factors that affect body temperature, the team says that humans still don’t need a new average for measuring body temperature.

As for the reason, scientists think that the body’s metabolic rate slows down due to environmental factors that affect body temperature. One possibility is that the improvements in public health over the past 200 years have reduced rates of inflammation, which promotes better health. Combined with a more comfortable life in a stable environment, the body does not have to run at full capacity to keep the body warm. Thus, it contributes to the reduction of the average human body temperature.

“The environment we live in is changing. The temperature in our homes, our exposure to food, and our bacteria are causing us to really change physiologically,” says Parsonnet.