Scrolling Headlines:

Struggles with special teams sinks UMass hockey -

October 21, 2017

UMass hockey drops second of the year in 3-1 loss to Ohio State -

October 20, 2017

Amazon textbook contract ending in December 2018 -

October 19, 2017

UMass field hockey heads into crucial A-10 matchup -

October 19, 2017

2017 Hockey Special Issue -

October 19, 2017

International Relations Club tackles tough issues at ‘Foreign Policy Coffee Hour’ -

October 19, 2017

Sexual assault reports spike on campus -

October 19, 2017

Californian students react to wildfires back home -

October 19, 2017

‘My Little Pony: The Movie’ is a surprising animated treat, whether you’re a fan of the show or not -

October 19, 2017

With a young team, Carvel is preparing the UMass hockey team to thrive -

October 19, 2017

Letter: UMass hockey is great, but where are the students? -

October 19, 2017

Boino’s blast gives UMass men’s soccer sole possession of first place in the Atlantic 10 -

October 19, 2017

UMass freshmen look to play physical, make an impact and improve early on -

October 19, 2017

UMass hockey sets out to create new program, identity in 2017-18 -

October 19, 2017

Cale Makar: UMass hockey’s crown jewel -

October 19, 2017

Ames: If first four games are any indicator, this UMass hockey season could differ for the better -

October 19, 2017

Josh Couturier looks to find where he fits within UMass lineup -

October 19, 2017

The straw man fallacy: missing the point on Indigenous Peoples Day -

October 19, 2017

Power to the Thin Mint: improve the Girls Scouts program -

October 19, 2017

‘Blade Runner 2049’ has a lot of ideas that it fails to develop -

October 19, 2017

Weather affecting mood?

Today, in Amherst, the weather is a cool 48 degrees and slightly cloudy. People in Key West, Fla. are enjoying a sunny 75 degree day. Which would you prefer? I am sure that they majority of you would choose Key West. In general, sunnier, warmer weather has a positive affect on a person’s mood and colder, cloudier weather has a negative affect. Some can develop Seasonal Affective Disorder, also known as fall-winter onset and a spring-summer remission.

Seasonal Affective Disorder is thought to have a direct relationship to weather. It actually does not; SAD appears in people when the seasons change. It is a rare disorder and is thought to be related to the body’s temperature and hormone regulation. It is known to occur more with women than men. People with this disorder experience depression with fall or winter onset. They may gain weight and have a lessened drive to do anything. SAD can be treated with light therapy. Most people with the “winter blahs” or cabin fever do not have SAD.

Many believe that weather affects mood, but this is not necessarily true. According to Mathew Keller, a University of Michigan post-doctoral researcher, “Everyone thinks weather affects mood, but the biggest tests of this theory in 2000 found no relationship, so we went back and found there are two important variables: how much time you spend outside and what the season is. If you go from winter to spring and spend enough time outside, there’s a noticeable change (www.sciencedaily.com).”

Keller and his colleagues collected and analyzed information from many different studies, in order to further investigate this theory. He found that the perfect temperature for Americans was about seventy-two degrees. Also in his findings, he discovered that people must spend at least 30 minutes outside in nice weather for their mood to actually increase.

Seeing spring is around the corner, it is important for people, especially college kids, to make an everyday attempt to go outside for at least a 30-minute period. Doing this can help your overall health by “improving mood, memory and broadening cognitive style (Keller).” The University of Michigan also found that by staying indoors, while the weather outside is nice, may actually decrease mood and cognitive ability (sciencedaily.com).

Being a college student at a large populated university, I see thousands of people everyday. Not only do I see them, I see the emotions and moods that they wear on their sleeves. It’s noticeable that spring is bringing out better moods in people. After talking to a few people, they also agreed that the nice weather has made them noticeably happier. I asked Kevin Kelleher, a friend of mine, how weather has affected him? “The sun gives me initiative to do things. I wake up in a better mood and look forward to getting outside.” Kevin simply replied.

This winter has been an extremely long one and with spring finally arriving, people are smiling more and have more interest to do work and go to classes. Although Mathew Keller believes that there in no direct relationship with weather affecting mood, I believe that just by the sun being out, moods are boosted. Weather does play a role in determining mood. Although it might not be as direct as some think, it is definitely there.Joshua Stephens is a UMass student.

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