This is exactly like the time I found out the Brontosaurus wasn't real, or Pluto wasn't a planet -- it turns out 98.6 degrees isn't normal human body temperature.

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The Wall Street Journal reports that nowadays, "the average normal human-body temperature is closer to 97.5 degrees Fahrenheit."

So how did we arrive at 98.6 being the agreed-upon benchmark of body temperature?

A study by German physician Carl Reinhold August Wunderlich in 1869 set the 98.6 standard -- he'd taken over a million temperature readings from 25,000 patients and concluded 98.6 was the average.

But a new study shows that today's humans run a little cooler: “People are taller, fatter and live longer, and we don’t really understand why all those things have happened,” Julie Parsonnet, who specializes in infectious diseases at Stanford and is senior author of the paper, told the WSJ. “Temperature is linked to all those things. The question is which is driving the others.”

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