Metabolic heating and climate

E. Linacre


Ambient conditions affect the amount of metabolic heating required to maintain the optimum body temperature. Less heating is needed in a warm climate such as that of Java, where Julius Mayer (1814-78) examined the venous blood of local men. He found that the blood is a brighter red amongst Java residents than amongst Englishmen, i.e. it contains more oxygen (1). This means that less was taken from the arterial blood in the process of metabolic heating. However the metabolism of Englishmen living in a hot climate adapted quickly.



(1) Sorbjan, Z. 1996. Hands-on Meteorology (Amer. Meteor. Soc.) 306pp.