Winter can limit the time spent outdoors to get sufficient sunlight. This does not only lead to a lack of vitamin D, but a recent study showed that it could also lead to a low mood. Worse, feeling down for a long time could create a negative impact on the immune system.

A survey involving 2,000 adults commissioned by Healthspan, which is a supplement brand, found that last winter, 81 percent of individuals did not step out during the daytime on certain days altogether. Among those aged 18 to 24, only nine percent of them had a little time to step out daily. On the other hand, almost 30 percent of those who were 55 years and older found time to step out during the daytime.

These were the numbers last year. This year, however, the numbers could worsen especially with Covid-19 restrictions. In fact, one in four people admitted that the lack of commute and the pandemic are among the reasons for spending lesser time outside this year. About 40 percent signified that they go for more online shopping this year and that 19 percent said that they would just see friends and family virtually.

This lesser time spent outdoors to catch daylight would also mean that the body would have lower levels of vitamin D. Healthline reports that sunlight is the primary source of vitamin D, which is why it is deemed as the "sunshine vitamin." Low levels of this vitamin affects not just physical health, but it also mental health and the body's immunity.

Dr Meg Arroll, a psychologist, speaking on behalf of Healthspan, said that they are seeing this pattern every winter. She said that with the restrictions in place, more time will be spent indoors, and this could have a negative impact on mental health.

She further explained that an experimental study that was conducted at Pennsylvania State University showed that people who were in a bad mood for several days exhibited higher inflammation levels. More evidence show that being in the dumps for a long time can impair the immune function of the body. Hence, when the immune system is affected, it renders individuals weak in fighting infections.

Low mood during winter Photo: Pixabay