Why Am I Always Cold

Livefit4ever, livefit4ever,
Medically Reviewed by Dr. Ananda Sagari,
February 12, 2024
Why Am I always cold

10 Reasons You Always Feel Cold or Have Cold Intolerance

“Why am I always cold?”
“Why are my hands always cold?”
“Why am I cold all the time?”
“Why are my hands and feet always cold?”

If you have these questions in your mind, then you are not alone. Many people have these unanswered questions in their minds. But don’t worry! Continue reading to get the answers…

First of all, let us try to understand whether it is natural to feel cold all the time or is there something else – for instance – any undetected underlying health issue to worry about?

Whatever may be the case; there is a natural tendency in some people to feel colder than others without any identifiable cause – but for others, cold intolerance can be due to an underlying cause.

According to Dr. Colton Redding – a general physician with Banner Health – “Cold intolerance is a heightened sensitivity to cold temperatures. It is an extreme feeling of chilliness one has when the surrounding is cool.”

Let us try to explore some of the potential reasons behind such coldness all the time.

Why Am I always cold

1. Hypothyroidism

When your thyroid gland does not produce enough thyroid hormones, you will develop this condition. Regulation of metabolism and temperature control are some of the main functions of thyroid gland. When thyroid gland doesn’t produce enough thyroid hormones, your body’s processes slow down and you will experience the following symptoms: feeling cold, thinning hair, constipation, fatigue, tiredness, a low heart rate, menstrual issues (in women) and depression.

Learn more about “Thyroid Disease Symptoms

2. Reynaud’s Phenomenon or Reynaud’s syndrome

When temperature drops, blood vessels spasm and constrict leading to reduced blood flow. When this happens, your fingers or toes turn white, blue, cold and numb. When the blood flow resumes, the fingers and toes look red, feel numb or painful. This condition is known as Raynaud’s syndrome or Raynaud’s phenomenon. Compared to males, females are at greater risk of developing this condition. Wearing gloves and covering exposed skin can help manage the symptoms. Managing stress can also help overcome this state if the cause is related to stress.

3. Anemia

Lack of iron or oxygen in the blood due to low levels of red blood cells and hemoglobin can make you feel cold, pale and weak. If you have anemia, you will also have pale skin, headache and rapid heart rate. The other symptoms of anemia may include lightheadedness or dizziness, fatigue and breathing difficulty.

Anemia is of two types

1. Iron deficiency anemia:

This may result from iron deficiency in the diet or poor iron absorption.

2. Vitamin deficiency anemia:

Mostly results from vitamin B12 and folic acid deficiency.

4. Peripheral Artery Disease

It is a condition in which blood flow to the extremities (hands, legs and feet) decreases. The symptoms include feeling of coldness, tingling, numbness or pain in the hands or feet. Peripheral artery disease develops due to accumulation of plaque in the arteries making them narrower. When this happens, blood flow slows down and it becomes difficult for blood to flow efficiently and reach the extremities. For this reason, you feel cold all the time.

5. Peripheral neuropathy

A long-term diabetes or uncontrolled blood sugar levels can damage your nerves mostly in your hands and feet. For this reason, you may feel numbness, tingling or pain in your hands and legs. This condition can make you feel cold.

What are the symptoms if you have blood vessels problems?

If you have blood vessels problems such as Raynaud’s syndrome, blood clotting disorders or peripheral artery disease, you will have the following symptoms besides feeling cold:

• Clammy and cold skin
• Tingling, numbness or throbbing sensations in the arms and legs
• White or blue coloring in fingers, nails and toes.

6. Anorexia Nervosa

An eating disorder, anorexia nervosa leads to weight loss or inadequate weight gain. People who have this condition, restrict their food intake, and exercise heavily. They often have low core temperature due to low levels of fat (low BMI) and reduced basal metabolic rate. The other symptoms of anorexia nervosa may include weakness, dizziness or fainting, trouble concentrating, stomach cramps, constipation, weight loss, dry and brittle nails.

7. Diabetic Nephropathy

People who have diabetes and feel cold all the time should take their condition seriously because one of the complications of diabetes is diabetic nephropathy. One of the symptoms of diabetic nephropathy is feeling cold all the time. Kidney damage due to diabetes can also cause other symptoms such as swelling in the face, hands and feet, loss of appetite, itchiness, nausea, shortness of breath and confusion.

8. Lack of sleep

When you do not get enough sleep, you are sleep deprived. It has short-term and long-lasting consequences on your body. Inadequate sleep can make you feel cold more frequently. It also affects metabolism and the part of the brain that regulates body temperature.

According to a research study [1] published in NIH (PubMed), sleep deprivation can lead to rapid heat loss to a mild cooling stimulus. It increases the vulnerability to heat loss with decreased ability to warm at normal temperatures.

9. Anxiety and Stress

Anxiety or stress triggers fight-or-flight response and makes your blood vessels to constrict. You will feel cold due to this response from your body. If you are frequently under stress and feel anxious all the time, then talk to your doctor.

10. Low Body Mass Index (BMI)

People who have low body mass index due to chronic illness such as inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), anorexia nervosa or cancer tend to have less fat – that’s why they often feel colder than others.

Bottom Line

Feeling cold all the time is not a good sign. If you feel cold frequently, even if you are in a warm room or long after being exposed to cold temperature, then you should talk to your doctor to know what might be the cause. It is therefore important to pay attention to your other symptoms or any new symptom that’s worsening your cold intolerance.

Remember! the treatment for chronic coldness depends on the underlying cause. If you have diabetes or any other health issues, you must consult a specialist doctor without any delay.


Sleep deprivation alters body temperature dynamics to mild cooling and heating not sweating threshold in women
C A Landis 1, M V Savage, M J Lentz, G L Brengelmann
Sleep deprivation alters body temperature dynamics to mild cooling and heating not sweating threshold in women


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