Gaining Weight in the Fall and Winter Months? New Study Explains Why
The holiday season brings with it plenty of feasting with family and friends, so a little extra indulgence is typically behavior for many people during the fall and winter months.
A new study from the University of Copenhagen looked at how varying degrees of light exposure can impact metabolic function. With less daylight during the fall and winter months, the body’s metabolism can slow down.
“The study is the first of its kind to examine light hour’s influence on metabolism in mice, that are not considered seasonal animals as like humans they do not only breed in specific seasons,” a summary of the study in Science Daily noted. “Animals breeding in specific seasons gain weight before the breeding season to save energy supplies.”
Researchers compared mice who received “winter light” with those who got “summer light.”
“Further studies in humans may find that altering our exposure to artificial light at night or natural light exposure over the year could be used to improve our metabolic health,” says Juleen Zierath, Professor at the Novo Nordisk Center for Basic Metabolism Research (CBMR) and senior author of the study.
Researcher Lewin Small added: “Differences in light between summer and winter could affect our hunger pathways and when we get hungry during the day.”