What Would It Actually Take For Humans to Hibernate?


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So, what would it take for humans to actually hibernate? To answer this, we first need to know why some animals hibernate in the first place. For warm-blooded animals, it can take a lot of energy to maintain a constant body temperature. That can be a really big challenge when their source of energy — food — is scarce. Hibernation is a survival mechanism that conserves energy by lowering the body’s core temperature, slowing the heart rate, and shifting into a lower metabolic state, known as torpor.

For example, when arctic ground squirrels enter hibernation their temperature plummets from 37°C to -3°C and their metabolic rate drops by about 99%. Humans, however, are stuck with a relatively fixed body temperature of 37°C.

Aside from minute variations, like when we sleep, our temperature only changes as a way to signal danger. Like when we’re sick, we get a fever. Just a few degrees off either way can mean death. But this isn’t a hard and fast rule. In 1999, a woman fell while skiing, crashing head first into a frozen stream. When medics arrived 80 minutes later, her body temperature had dropped to 13.7°C, rendering her clinically dead. But she miraculously survived! The extreme cold lowered her metabolism so her brain wasn’t oxygen starved. This can lead to permanent brain damage in a matter of minutes… usually not enough time to make it to the operating table.

#seeker #science #elements #hibernation #humanbody

Read More:

You Could Probably Hibernate
https://www.theatlantic.com/health/ar…
“‘It’s very possible that humans could hibernate,’ says Kelly Drew, a professor at the University of Alaska’s Institute of Arctic Biology. Drew studies arctic ground squirrels, chunky little creatures that disappear into burrows for eight months of the year.”

How hibernating animals are helping doctors treat diabetes and Alzheimer’s
https://www.wired.co.uk/article/anima…
“During hibernation, connections between neurons in the brain deteriorate, just as they do in Alzheimer’s, but what happens as the animals start waking up? You guessed it; synapses are restored.”

This scientist is searching for secrets of life in close brushes with death
https://www.geekwire.com/2021/scienti…
“Roth sees a thread connecting these catastrophes with something seemingly quite different: immortality. Both conditions “press pause” on life, he said. It’s playing dead without being dead.”

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About agogo22

Director of Manchester School of Samba at http://www.sambaman.org.uk
This entry was posted in health and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to What Would It Actually Take For Humans to Hibernate?

  1. Sounds tempting, but life is too short …

    Liked by 1 person

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