Researchers discover the reason behind the strange decrease in human body temperatures in the past two centuries

Fareeha Arshad
Photo byPhoto by Winel Sutanto on Unsplash

As per a recent study published in the journal 'Cell Biology', scientists have discovered that the average body temperature of humans is no longer 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit, as established in France two centuries ago. Researchers have found a reduction in body temperature among men and women born over the past two hundred years. The reason for this decline in body temperature is unclear, but researchers are investigating a possible connection to a decline in physical activity.

Regular exercise raises the body's resting temperature, which can last for hours or even a day, so falling body temperature readings may indicate declining physical activity. Unfortunately, tracking physical activity levels from two hundred years ago is impossible.

However, using historical body temperature data as a "thermometer," researchers attempted to model the relationships between physical activity, metabolism, and body temperature, to gauge physical activity before modern tracking methods were established.

The study's initial estimate found that the metabolic rate of men has decreased by 6 per cent since the 1820s, which is about thirty minutes of physical activity in twenty-four hours. The results are based on many assumptions and need further refinement, but the researchers hope their approximation will provide insight into how a decline in physical activity has affected health and morbidity during the industrial era.

The decline in physical activity levels in modern society is undoubtedly true, thanks to technological advances such as automobiles, televisions, and desk jobs. However, it is unclear how this impacts our metabolisms and our bodies' temperature. Additional factors like improved health and nutrition and reduced need for thermoregulation in modern environments impact our metabolic rates.

This is original content from NewsBreak’s Creator Program. Join today to publish and share your own content.

Comments / 355

Published by

I am a scientist by profession and a historian by passion. I mostly write about history and science.

Texas State

More from Fareeha Arshad

Comments / 0