A recent study by two Dutch scientists has revealed that women may feel temperatures differently to men in the workplace. According to the paper women feel the cold easier! A small sample test carried out found that women are comfortable at a temperature which is 2.5C warmer than men.
Professor Paul Thornalley at Warwick Medical School said that variation in average metabolic rate and body heat production between men and women could “explain why there is a difference in environmental temperature required for comfort between males and females.”
Professor Paul Thornalley at Warwick Medical School said that “there is a difference in environmental temperature required for comfort between males and females.”
The body’s metabolism is responsible for growth and the production of energy including heat. On average women have a lower metabolic rate than men. Men typically have a higher proportion of body mass which can produce heat involuntarily meaning that on average men don’t feel the cold as much as women. This means in the warm summer month’s males in the office might have a lower tolerance for the hot weather! Their bodies are producing more heat meaning they get warmer quicker.
However, Thornalley points out that obviously everyone is different and some men may have a lower metabolic rate than some women.
The usual recommended temperature for a working environment is at least 16C or 13C if the work involves rigorous physical activity. If the temperature becomes uncomfortably warm then it is the responsibility of the employer to provide fans or cooling equipment for employees.
So next time a male in the office turns up the air conditioning you know why!
Posted August 25, 2015