Weather Myths: Can weather determine how you feel?

January 18, 2017 11:33 PM

It's believed that the weather can determine how we think and feel. Especially during these cold, winter months in Rochester. So does a gloomy day really make you feel gloomy?

We all know that Rochester gets its fair share of snow and cold temperatures this time of year. On average from December through February we get around 70 inches of snow and normal high temperatures are usually in the low to mid 30s.

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Dr. Justin Vandermeid, Resident Doctor Strong:  “Patients can experience low mood or melancholy, they also have lack of energy lack of activity.”

Does this sound like you lately? Well you're not alone! And no, it's not because you woke up on the wrong side of the bed.

Dr. Justin Vandermeid at Strong Hospital tells us it's because of the time of year.

Dr. Justin Vandermeid: “It's not really the cold weather and it's not so much precipitation or snow fall, it's as you said- phase of light.”

So lack of sunlight is to blame. As the hours in a typical day decrease in the winter, the number of people with seasonal affective disorder- or the feeling of being sad- increases.

That's why not surprisingly Dr. Vandermeid says only four percent of people in Florida experience sad, while one in five people here in Rochester feel blue this time of year.

Dr. Justin Vandermeid, Resident Doctor Strong: “Generally, the winter blues starts usually in October spans through March with December, January, and February being the worst of those months.”

So it's true - lack of sunlight during the winter months can make you feel sad. There are ways to combat that - Dr. Vandermeid says exercising, spending time outside and eating food with high vitamin d like eggs or milk and substituting carbs with fruit can be helpful!


Brianna DiPilato

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