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News2009July › A lack of sunshine can affect our memory › July 2009

A lack of sunshine can affect our memory

A lack of sunlight doesn't only make us feel down in the dumps - it can also affect our memory, especially if we're already depressed

A lack of sunlight doesn't only make us feel down in the dumps - it can also affect our memory, especially if we're already depressed.

Scientists thought that a lack of sunshine, especially during the long winter months in the Northern hemisphere, only made us depressed and caused a condition known as SAD (seasonal affective disorder) - but new research suggests it does far more.

A study of 14,474 people with diagnosed depression found that those who lived in parts of the United States that had the least amount of sunshine suffered from short-term memory loss and other cognitive functions.

(Source: Environmental Health, 2009; in press).


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