Understanding the Reasons Behind Constant Cold Sensations

Understanding the Reasons Behind Constant Cold Sensations
In the midst of the scorching heat of July and August, do you find yourself strangely grappling with the chills? Are you constantly voicing complaints at your workplace about the freezing temperatures set on the air conditioner? Here’s a fact: women are more prone to feeling cold. This phenomenon can be attributed to physiological factors, but there are also a range of other reasons. Let’s delve into the ten possible explanations behind this:

1. You are thin

Having a low body weight, with a Body Mass Index (BMI) of less than 18.5, might be a contributing factor to why you are always feeling cold. There are two main reasons behind this. First, your body is devoid of the insulating layer of fat that shields it from low temperatures. Second, in an attempt to maintain a low BMI, you might not be consuming sufficient food. This leads to a slow metabolism, and as a result, your body is unable to produce enough heat. It is recommended to increase your weight by consuming a balanced diet rich in protein, fat and complex carbohydrates.

2. You have hypothyroidism

Feeling cold persistently can be an indicator of hypothyroidism. This is a medical condition in which the thyroid gland does not secrete adequate hormones. The metabolism, consequently, slows down preventing the body from generating enough heat. Other symptoms of hypothyroidism include thinning hair, dry skin and fatigue.

3. You have iron deficiency

Iron deficiency is one of the primary causes of a chronic sensation of cold. Iron is a vital mineral that aids red blood cells in transporting oxygen and other nutrients to every cell in the body to generate energy. When the body is low on iron, the red blood cells fail to effectively perform their function, leading to a feeling of coldness.

4. You have poor circulation

If your hands and feet are consistently cold while the rest of your body feels normal, it could signify an issue with your blood circulation. This could be indicative of a cardiovascular problem, where the heart is unable to pump blood efficiently or there could be an obstruction in an artery, preventing blood flow to the extremities. Smoking can also lead to circulation problems as it causes the blood vessels to constrict.

5. You are sleep-deprived

Lack of sleep can disrupt the nervous system and impair the brain mechanism that regulates body temperature. Although the exact cause is not known, studies suggest that it could be the body’s response to the stress caused by sleep deprivation. This leads to reduced activity in the hypothalamus, the brain’s temperature-regulating area.

6. You are dehydrated

Water constitutes over 60% of an adult’s body and plays a crucial role in regulating body temperature. Adequate water intake allows the body to store and gradually release heat, thereby maintaining a comfortable body temperature. Insufficient water intake makes the body more sensitive to extreme temperatures. Additionally, water aids in kick-starting the metabolism, which in turn affects body temperature.

7. You have a vitamin B12 deficiency

Vitamin B12, found exclusively in animal-based food products, is instrumental in preventing chills. The body requires this vitamin for the production of red blood cells, which transport oxygen throughout the body. A deficiency of vitamin B12 can lead to anemia, characterized by a low red blood cell count, which can result in a chronic feeling of cold.

8. You are a woman

Interestingly, the structure of a woman’s body could be a reason behind feeling cold. The female body is designed to retain heat in crucial organs like the brain and heart. Consequently, less blood circulates to other, less vital organs, such as the hands and feet, making them colder. Research conducted on the subject found that women, despite having a higher body temperature, had hands and feet temperatures lower by a few tenths of a degree.

9. You have diabetes

Uncontrolled diabetes could lead to a condition known as diabetic neuropathy, which causes damage to the nerve endings. This condition can result in a loss of sensation in the hands and feet. Since these body parts communicate temperature to the brain, they might feel cold. Diabetic neuropathy is a gradual condition, and it’s possible to have it without being aware of it. Hence, if you’re diabetic or exhibit symptoms of diabetes, it’s essential to consult a doctor.

10. You need to enhance muscle mass

Muscles contribute to maintaining body temperature by producing heat. Therefore, a lack of sufficient muscle mass could make you feel cold. Moreover, a higher muscle mass boosts the body’s metabolism, which in turn reduces the sensation of cold. Hence, it’s advised to engage in physical activities that build muscle, in addition to aerobic exercises.

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