Is the Common Cold Actually Linked to the Cold?

December 30 2014

James Patten


For many years, we’ve all been used to hearing the old wives’ tale of ‘go out in the cold and you’ll catch a cold’. For just as long an amount of time, most of us will have been used to dismissing the warning as a product of a bygone age. Well, we’re not about to suddenly tell you that purely being a bit chilly is going to lead to a cold (there’s a small matter of catching a virus involved, after all), but some new research does seem to suggest that a cold nose could have a lot to answer for.

Colds and Cold Noses

According to the BBC, the key component behind this situation is that fact that the human immune system could be weaker when exposed to cold temperatures. As a result, the cold virus tends to thrive in such environments. A team of US scientists have tested the levels of duplication seen in rhinoviruses – a common cause behind the cold – when they’re found in both a 37°C body temperature and a 33°C nose, and the results seem to be the clearest cut of any study thus far.

How It All Works

In actual fact, there’s been a suspicion that the colder temperature of the nose has had something to do with the replication of the cold virus for some five decades, but now this latest project has revealed beyond doubt  that a set of sensors in the nose are far more lax in cold temperatures. As these sensors are integral for organising the body’s immune system against a virus, the relationship between the cold virus and the colder weather seems to be very easily explained.

‘More Complicated…’

Of course, the team have cautioned that the situation is ‘much more complicated’ than it sounds, but, put simply, the idea of keeping your nose warmer behind something like a scarf could have some merit. It certainly won’t do you any harm, although don’t expect that your winter colds are just going to fade completely out of existence any time soon. It also goes without saying that keeping your nose warm won’t do too much for the rest of your body, and you can’t very well sit with a scarf on in the office, so we’re not expecting industrial heaters to fall out of favour anytime soon!

At Heritage Heating and Cooling, our heating solutions are all manufactured by reputable manufacturers like Powrmatic (sometimes called Powermatic), so you can count on your premises being warm and snug all throughout the winter. Naturally, germs can breed in hot environments, so you don’t want things to get too cosy, and that’s exactly why we offer cooling systems as well. To find out more, contact us by calling 01509 814 123 or email

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