For many females, the chill is all too real. Plenty of offices, homes, and other spaces are basically freezing them out. That said, there are some real reasons females are always colder than males, according to science. The constant chill is definitely not just imaginary.
Although jokes about males and females arguing over the thermostat are old as time, constantly feeling cold is no joke for many women. Just consider the general working environment. As it turns out, many office buildings set the temperature based on a formula from decades ago set to suit the metabolic rates of males. For the most part, these buildings may feel uncomfortably cold to females, as a study in Nature Climate Change determined. In general, "the phenomenon of women getting cold is very, very obvious," and employees who are uncomfortable with the temperature may be less productive, as Khee Poh Lam, an architecture professor at Carnegie Mellon, explained in The New York Times. It's a real thing.
So if you're ever called out for being cold all the time, then here are some real reasons females feel colder than males in similar environments. It's definitely not just in your head, because plenty of other females are in the same (chilly) boat.
1. Females Generally Have Less Muscle Mass
Muscles may help with heat retention. In general, bodies with more muscle may be less susceptible to heat loss, according to a study by Stephanie Payne, Alison Macintosh, and Jay Stock in the American Journal of Physical Anthropology. "For example, women and children are less likely to have a high muscle mass so cold-weather gear, such as gloves, should be produced and marketed with that in mind," said lead author of the study Stephanie Payne in Science Daily. There's no shame in bringing along a sweater when your male friends are all hanging out in shorts, in other words.
2. Their Metabolic Rates Aren't The Same
The reason females keep bumping up the thermostat may have a lot to do with their body's metabolic rate. "Since women have a lower metabolic rate, they tend to produce less heat than men do, which makes them feel colder," said Rob Danoff, DO, an osteopathic family physician from Philadelphia, in Doctors of Osteopathic Medicine. It's just a biological thing.
Hormones affect pretty much everything, including temperature sensitivity. "Fluctuations in estrogen levels can affect sensitivity to cold, causing women to feel colder than usual during some stages of the menstrual cycle," as neurologist Heidi Moawad, MD., explained in Very Well Health.
4. The Location Of Blood Vessels
Don't forget about blood flow. "Women’s blood vessels are typically farther from the skin. Men’s tend to be closer to the surface. Blood vessels that are farther from the skin surface don’t warm the skin as efficiently," wrote Jacqueline M. Koski, DO, a family medicine physician at the Aurora Health Center in Fond du Lac, WI. It's another biological difference that can make females feel chilly.
5. Differences In Cold Perception
For the most part, females simply tend to feel colder than males. "Several factors explain why women tend to feel colder than men. For one, when women feel cold, they constrict blood vessels near the skin surface to retain core body heat, but it makes them feel colder," as professors David W. Niesel and Norbert K. Herzog of Medical Discovery News explained. When this and other biological realities are taken into consideration, it's no wonder some females feel like the world is pretty chilly. Go ahead and wear those sweaters throughout the summer with pride, because it's just the way some bodies are made.