Science Focus - the home of BBC Science Focus Magazine
Why do women feel the cold more than men? © Getty Images

Why do women feel the cold more than men?

Subscribe to BBC Science Focus Magazine and get 6 issues for just £9.99

Brrr, turn up the heat! Women tend to be more sensitive to temperature than men.

Asked by: Alan Healy, France

Advertisement

Partly this is because, for a given bodyweight, women tend to have less muscle tissue to generate heat.

But the hormone oestrogen also has a big impact because it has the side effect of thickening the blood slightly. This reduces blood flow to the tiny capillaries supplying the extremities.

A 1998 study at the University of Utah found that this can mean women have hands, feet and ears that are 3°C colder than a man’s.

Read more:


Advertisement

Subscribe to BBC Focus magazine for fascinating new Q&As every month and follow @sciencefocusQA on Twitter for your daily dose of fun science facts.

Authors

luis villazon
Luis VillazonQ&A expert

Luis trained as a zoologist, but now works as a science and technology educator. In his spare time he builds 3D-printed robots, in the hope that he will be spared when the revolution inevitably comes.

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement

Sponsored content