Monday, October 25, 2010

Exposure to light at night may lead to weight gain.

From AOL Health, submitted by Coozer-Phile Jen C!
Exposure to light at night, when the body is programmed to shutdown or go into sleep mood, may lead to weight gain -- even if the person exposed to the light is not eating extra calories.

Ohio State University researchers recently discovered that mice exposed to light at night, particularly dim light, gained more weight than their counterparts who lived in a normal light/dark cycle even thought the mice exposed to light at night didn't eat more food.

"What was actually happening was that mice with light at night were shifting when they were eating," says Laura Fonken, lead study author and a doctoral student in Ohio State's neuroscience department. "They were eating during their rest phase."

So what does this mean for humans who stay up late watching TV or surfing the Internet?

"It's hard to predict," says Fonken, "but evidence suggests this may be true in humans, too."

She suspects there may be a link between humans' increased exposure to light at night and the increase in rates of obesity nationwide.

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