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Appl Physiol Nutr Metab. 2012 Oct;37(5):840-9. doi: 10.1139/h2012-053. Epub 2012 Jun 12.

Body heat storage during intermittent work in hot-dry and warm-wet environments.

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University of Ottawa, Faculty of Health Sciences, Ottawa, ON K1N 6N5, Canada.


We examined heat balance using an American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists threshold limit value allocated exercise protocol in hot-dry (HD; 46 °C, 10% relative humidity (RH)) and warm-wet (WW; 33 °C, 60% RH) environments of equivalent WBGT (29 °C) for different clothing ensembles. Whole-body heat exchange and changes in body heat content (ΔH(b)) were measured using simultaneous direct whole-body and indirect calorimetry. Eight males performed six 15-min cycling periods at a constant rate of metabolic heat production (360 W) interspersed by 5-min rest periods for six experimental trials: HD and WW environments for a seminude control (CON), modified work uniform (MWU, moisture permeable top and work pants), and standard work uniform (SWU, work coveralls and cotton undergarments). Whole-body evaporative and dry heat exchange, rectal temperature (T(re)), and heart rate were measured continuously. The cumulative ΔH(b) during the 2 h intermittent exercise protocol was similar between HD and WW environments for each of the clothing ensembles (CON, 387 ± 55 vs. 435 ± 49 kJ; MWU, 485 ± 58 vs. 531 ± 61 kJ; SWU, 585 ± 74 vs. 660 ± 54 kJ, respectively). Similarly, no differences in T(re) (CON, 37.67 ± 0.07 vs. 37.48 ± 0.08 °C; MWU, 37.73 ± 0.08 vs. 37.53 ± 0.09 °C; SWU, 38.01 ± 0.09 vs. 37.94 ± 0.05 °C) or heat rate (CON, 93 ± 3 vs. 84 ± 3 beats·min⁻¹; MWU, 102 ± 5 vs. 95 ± 9 beats·min⁻¹; SWU, 119 ± 8 vs. 110 ± 9 beats·min⁻¹) were observed at the end of the 2 h intermittent exercise protocol in HD vs. WW environments, respectively. We showed similar levels of thermal and cardiovascular strain for intermittent work performed in high heat stress conditions of varying environmental conditions but similar WBGT.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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