Beware the holiday munchies!

By Casey Frye, CCNN Writer

munchies
‘Tis the season to be extra hungry, so be careful!

Humans just might be prone to packing on the pounds during the winter, according to health experts, kind of like bears preparing to hibernate!

Even though we don’t spend months on end in a deep sleep, our bodies seem to love storing up fat during the frosty season. In fact, several studies support the idea that we have a deep instinct to increase our calorie consumption during the long and cold winter months.

After all, back in the day, food was really hard to find during this time, so our bodies evolved a desire to eat extra helpings. Before modern conveniences like electricity, refrigerators, and microwaves, animals and plants were super scarce when it was cold for months. Our body never knew when the next meal was coming, so it learned to become extra hungry during the coldest part of the year!

Researchers believe that winter munchies might also be related to seasonal affective disorder (SAD) – a condition which causes people to feel depressed when the seasons change. Some symptoms of this disorder include hopelessness, anxiety, restlessness, and appetite changes. These symptoms can trigger some individuals to eat impulsively. Sadly, they may not pay close attention to the types of food they are shoveling into their faces.

Featured image courtesy of CxOxS on Wikipedia. Image of regretful diner courtesy of Kiril Yankov on Flickr.