core temperature

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Temperature in the part of the body that contains the vital organs (the brain, heart, lungs, and kidneys). The core temperature is taken internally (e.g. in the rectum or oesophagus) and it normally remains within a narrow range, usually 36.5–37.5 °C. This is the temperature at which the majority of metabolic processes work most efficiently. The temperature of the rest of the body may differ from the core. During exercise, heat is generated and muscle temperature may reach 39–40 °C. Skeletal muscle functions best at 38.5 °C. The thermoregulatory centre for core temperature lies in the hypothalamus.

Subjects: Sports and Exercise Medicine.

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