(This means that, for those of us in the Northern Hemisphere, becoming spherical at Christmas is no more than sensible. So we can eat, drink and be merry with a clear conscience, hurray!)
The advantage Neanderthals got from their stocky and short-limbed body shape was real, but fairly small. They’d have lived longer than us if they’d fallen into a cold river, but they’d certainly have perished if stuck out all night in winter without shelter.
I wonder how many clothes we’d have to put on ourselves to be as hardy as a naked Neanderthal?
My guess would be something like a padded lumberjack shirt and a pair of jeans – but as far as I know no one’s yet done the research.
Now there's a nice project if someone in academia fancies it.