PHYSIOGNOMY: A FUNNY THING
You may be someone – or know someone – who is always cold. Even in the office, with the heating on. Heat efficiency varies wildly from person to person. In my rescue team we all wear the same jacket, yet I’ve seen a search manager struggle to make decisions after becoming hypothermic in exactly the same jacket as I was feeling snug in.
Research suggests that being a cold person may be partly hereditary. Some people are more finely attuned to experiencing cold, and some people have less effective nervous systems to kick in and tell the body to shiver or constrict the surface capillaries.
Physical size is also a factor. We lose heat through our skin, so larger people with a lower weight-to-skin-area ratio will lose heat less quickly.
But nature is only part of it; there’s also nurture. Our cosy homes and central heating have made some people more prone to feeling the cold acutely when they step out into it.
Finally, age. As we get older our circulation can slow down quite a bit, meaning older walkers can struggle to get warm as quickly as they’d like.