The connection between temperature and one’s immune system is about more than just your body signaling sickness with a fever. With autumn’s arrival and winter’s approach, the cooler temperatures and shorter days increase the time spent indoors. And since poorly ventilated indoor areas set the perfect landscape for infectious diseases to spread, it makes sense that as people spend more time indoors, their opportunity to experience an attack on their immune system increases.
In addition to autumn signaling the start to more indoor time, it also ushers in cooler and sometimes more humid weather, making it easier for disease to spread. On top of the weather, autumn’s shorter days often result in less exercise, less vitamin D from the sun, and a sleep schedule that’s out of whack–the perfect storm for a weakened immune system.
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Your body’s reaction to autumn’s arrival and the weather and temperature difference it triggers isn’t just figurative. You’ve likely noticed that your skin is drier in colder weather, and perhaps you’ve even noticed that your eyes, lungs, and the mucous membranes in your nose are drier during the onset of lower humidity.
So the concept of autumn affecting your body isn’t entirely new. And you know those particles that release when someone sneezes or coughs around you? Unfortunately, cold temperatures break those particles down, which makes it easier for you to inhale them.
So, does the autumn temperatures themselves make you sick? No. But autumn does kick down a domino that triggers a chain reaction. And now that you know why you’re more susceptible to sickness in the autumn and winter months, do your best to strengthen your immune system so that it’s ready to fight when challenged.
When it comes to your immune system, being proactive is always more ideal than just being reactive. Viruses and bacteria will not wait on you to ready your shield, so strengthen your immune system before they try to invade.
Author: Evelyn Lindell
Certified Health & Wellness Coach