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Good Question: Why Do We Like 70-Degree Temps?

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(credit: CBS) Heather Brown
Heather Brown loves to put her innate curiosity to work to answer yo...
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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Sunny, 79, with a slight breeze along the Mississippi River.

Summers in Minnesota are the reason many people deal with the winter months. So, that had Brad Ehlers of Fergus Falls asking: Why are we comfortable with weather between 68-72 degrees when our body temperatures average 98.6 degrees?

Dr. Tim Mead teaches anatomy at the University of St. Thomas.

“Ninety eight point six [degress] isn’t everywhere you find in the body, it’s just [the] deep organs,” Dr. Mead said.

For humans to survive, Dr. Mead says they have several millions of reactions per second in their bodies. Those chemical reactions produce heat.

“Your body has to get rid of it somehow, and 70 degrees appears to be ideal for most people as far as getting rid of that heat,” he said.

Dr. Mead says there is no magic number when it comes to comfort. Instead, it depends on the person.

“The more tissue you have, especially if you’re overweight, the harder it is to get rid of that heat,” he said.

ASHRAE, a leading building technology company, studies the temperatures where most people feel comfortable inside. In the summer, it’s between 72 and 79 degrees. In the winter, it’s between 68 and 74 degrees because people wear more clothes.

Our bodies like that range because it’s cool enough to efficiently get rid of heat, but warm enough not to chill.

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