Does Exposure to Climate Heat Raise Inflammation and Disrupt Immunity?

Preliminary research presented at the American Heart Association suggests that short-term climate exposure to higher heat may raise inflammation levels and disrupt immune system function, potentially increasing susceptibility to infections and hastening cardiovascular disease progression. Inflammation, crucial for defense against injury or infection, becomes harmful when prolonged, contributing to arterial plaque buildup and atherosclerosis. Lead author Daniel W. Riggs highlights the importance of considering various heat measurements beyond just temperature to understand its health impacts fully. The study, involving 624 adults in Louisville, found that higher Universal Thermal Climate Index (UTCI) levels were associated with increased inflammation markers and reduced B-cell activity, indicating a weakened adaptive immune response. With rising global temperatures, the findings underscore concerns about heat exposure’s potential to compromise immune function, particularly among older adults and those with cardiovascular issues, prompting recommendations for mitigation strategies and tailored medical interventions to address heat-related health risks.


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The ideas expressed here are solely the opinions of the author and are not researched or verified by AGEIST LLC, or anyone associated with AGEIST LLC. This material should not be construed as medical advice or recommendation, it is for informational use only. We encourage all readers to discuss with your qualified practitioners the relevance of the application of any of these ideas to your life. The recommendations contained herein are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. You should always consult your physician or other qualified health provider before starting any new treatment or stopping any treatment that has been prescribed for you by your physician or other qualified health provider. Please call your doctor or 911 immediately if you think you may have a medical or psychiatric emergency.

Taylor Marks
Taylor Marks is a certified holistic health coach and professionally trained chef from The Institute of Culinary Education. Her passions include the latest research in health science, culinary arts, holistic wellness, and guiding others towards feeling their best.