spitzbergen

How do the bodies react to extreme cold?

As you were able to read in the past, Bernice, Eric and Martin have to experience temperatures of -20°C to -25°C during their trip. Difficult to imagine, while we are enjoying the summer-like sun in Europe…But how does the body react to such an extreme cold?
Signs of a slow onset of hypothermia are exhaustion and strong tremors. At a body temperature between 32 and 35°C the body experiences cold stress. To activate its reserves, the body reacts with hyperglycemia. This is an elevated blood sugar level. From a body temperature of 33°C on people are only sluggish and no longer responsive because the blood sugar level is significantly increased. At a temperature below 30°C around the heart there is also a threatening high proportion of potassium in the blood. In general, the process of sub-cooling takes several hours.
You can only adjust to the cold by behaving properly. The best protection against the cold is good clothes. These should be able to keep the wind out, be breathable and be transparent for body sweat. If the sweat remains on the skin, individuals begin to freeze very quickly. Mostly, several layers of clothes, for example for trekking and/or expeditions, are required. At a greater exposure to cold, warmth can be obtained by wearing mittens instead of finger gloves. Also, ensure an adequate headgear as up to 50% of body heat is lost through the head region.