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Genders: unequal in the face of the cold

Here is the translation of the text into English:

2-degree difference between men and womenAccording to research, the ideal room temperature is not the same for men and women, with a noticeable 2-degree difference. But how is this possible?

Please note that every human is different, so this should not be generalized because many factors come into play: age, stress, fatigue, or lifestyle...

That said, studies show that the determining factor would be testosterone, which is naturally more present in males.

To delve deeper into terms that no one remembers, we will talk about thermogenesis and thermosensation.

In summary, the first one is related to regulation: the mechanism of increasing body temperature, and the second one simply represents the sensation of external temperature (the body is a giant thermometer).

So, testosterone inhibits a protein that detects cold through nerve endings under the skin. The level of this hormone determines thermosensation (aka the sensation of external temperature).

This is a first explanation that could account for the 1-degree difference in ideal room temperature, but the difference is 2 degrees.


The second explanation can be attributed to the female hormone by definition: estrogen.

Estrogen significantly thickens the blood, making it more challenging to circulate to the extremities. This hormone also acts on a part of the brain that controls thermoregulation (the balance of body temperature). We can even go further: during the ovulation period, a hormone (progesterone) would raise the body's temperature by up to 0.7 degrees, increasing the gap with external temperature.

During menstruation, the body can warm up by up to 0.7 degrees.

As mentioned earlier, the reasons for these differences are multiple: muscle mass, which is more significant in men, generates heat, in contrast to body fat, which is often cooler.

The physical and physiological aspects agree to give us the choice of interpretation.

However (yes, there's always a "but"), not everything can be reduced to biology.

Female discomfort in the cold is also related to societal norms devised by men, for men. Public places and workspaces are often kept at a lower temperature to satisfy men who can be content with a temperature between 20 and 21°C.

If this is not perfect for everyone, it is still too high for the planet: energy sobriety demands that we lower this figure further, but this time it's for a good cause.

Fortunately, attitudes are changing and evolving, and more and more scientists are incorporating these biological differences into their calculations for a common ideal.

And you will agree, it is always easier to dress when it's cold than to remove layers when it's hot, we are well-placed to know!

For more scientific figures and vocabulary, click here!

If you have any further questions or need additional assistance, please feel free to ask.


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