Texarkana, TX 57° View Live Radar Sat H 59° L 37° Sun H 61° L 40° Mon H 59° L 40° Weather Sponsored By:

Why do some get cold while other people stay warm?

Why do some get cold while other people stay warm?

December 16th, 2017 by Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D. in Features

Q: Why is it that when I'm outside with friends in the winter, it seems I always feel colder than everyone else, even when I am dressed just as warmly?—Carmela V., Syracuse, New York

A: Different people's bodies develop different cold tolerances. Your chilliness boils down to how well your body produces and retains heat.

When you're in the cold, the network of blood vessels close to your skin's surface retreats inward so you don't lose heat. But you end up with cold fingers and toes. Some folks' blood vessels make a deeper retreat (that may be you).

The body does try to help out by making you shiver: When muscles contract and release, they create heat and (hopefully) warm you up. But how much heat you lose—and how warm you stay—depends on lots of factors:

Body fat: The more fat right under the skin, the more insulated your body is and the less heat you give off.

Height: Generally speaking, the taller you are, more skin area your body has. That means more opportunity for heat to escape.

Age: Older bodies are less able to regulate temperature and are more cold-sensitive.

Sex: Vasoconstriction, that retreat of the blood vessels and resulting cold fingers and toes, happens more to women. Fluctuations in menstrual hormones also can make women more sensitive to cold at certain times of the month.

Underlying conditions: It's possible that hypercoldness may indicate an undiagnosed disorder such as Raynaud's phenomenon or an autoimmune condition such as Sjogren's or Hashimoto's (low thyroid).

So what can you do? If you're concerned, talk to your doctor. Try building up your tolerance. There's evidence that exposing yourself to the cold for 20 minutes a day and avoiding prolonged stays in warm rooms is effective.

Other research shows that exercising regularly boosts your resting metabolic rate, so your body produces more heat. First step: getting 10,000 steps daily and having two to three weekly sessions of strength building (more muscles, more warmth). Still chilly while outside? Run in place, or do 20 jumps.


Mehmet Oz, M.D. is host of "The Dr. Oz Show," and Mike Roizen, M.D. is Chief Wellness Officer and Chair of Wellness Institute at Cleveland Clinic. Email your health and wellness questions to Dr. Oz and Dr. Roizen at youdocsdaily@sharecare.com.


(c) 2017 Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D.

Getting Started/Comments Policy

Getting started

  1. 1. If you frequently comment on news websites then you may already have a Disqus account. If so, click the "Login" button at the top right of the comment widget and choose whether you'd rather log in with Facebook, Twitter, Google, or a Disqus account.
  2. 2. If you've forgotten your password, Disqus will email you a link that will allow you to create a new one. Easy!
  3. 3. If you're not a member yet, Disqus will go ahead and register you. It's seamless and takes about 10 seconds.
  4. 4. To register, either go through the login process or just click in the box that says "join the discussion," type your comment, and either choose a social media platform to log you in or create a Disqus account with your email address.
  5. 5. If you use Twitter, Facebook or Google to log in, you will need to stay logged into that platform in order to comment. If you create a Disqus account instead, you'll need to remember your Disqus password. Either way, you can change your display name if you'd rather not show off your real name.
  6. 6. Don't be a huge jerk or do anything illegal, and you'll be fine.

Texarkana Gazette Comments Policy

The Texarkana Gazette web sites include interactive areas in which users can express opinions and share ideas and information. We cannot and do not monitor all of the material submitted to the website. Additionally, we do not control, and are not responsible for, content submitted by users. By using the web sites, you may be exposed to content that you may find offensive, indecent, inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise objectionable. You agree that you must evaluate, and bear all risks associated with, the use of the Gazette web sites and any content on the Gazette web sites, including, but not limited to, whether you should rely on such content. Notwithstanding the foregoing, you acknowledge that we shall have the right (but not the obligation) to review any content that you have submitted to the Gazette, and to reject, delete, disable, or remove any content that we determine, in our sole discretion, (a) does not comply with the terms and conditions of this agreement; (b) might violate any law, infringe upon the rights of third parties, or subject us to liability for any reason; or (c) might adversely affect our public image, reputation or goodwill. Moreover, we reserve the right to reject, delete, disable, or remove any content at any time, for the reasons set forth above, for any other reason, or for no reason. If you believe that any content on any of the Gazette web sites infringes upon any copyrights that you own, please contact us pursuant to the procedures outlined in the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (Title 17 U.S.C. § 512) at the following address:

Copyright Agent
The Texarkana Gazette
15 Pine Street
Texarkana, TX 75501
Phone: 903-794-3311
Email: webeditor@texarkanagazette.com