Can’t cool off this summer? Heat waves can slow us down in ways we may not realize. New research suggests heat stress can muddle our thinking, making simple math a little harder to do.
“There’s evidence that our brains are susceptible to temperature abnormalities,” says Joe Allen, co-director of the Center for Climate, Health and the Global Environment at Harvard University. And as the climate changes, temperatures spike and heat waves are more frequent.
To learn more about how the heat influences young, healthy adults, Allen and his colleagues studied college students living in dorms during a summer heat wave in Boston. Half of the students lived in buildings with central AC, where the indoor air temperature averaged 71 degrees. The other half lived in dorms with no AC, where air temperatures averaged almost 80 degrees.
Excerpted from NPR