The sun whets the appetite

The sun opens the appetite

The sun may influence the amount of food eaten, especially in males, according to a new study.

Male mice exposed to UVB rays for about ten days ate more than those who were not exposed to it, report researchers from Tel Aviv University. Scientists have also observed in their blood an increase in levels of ghrelin, a hormone that stimulates appetite. However, the phenomenon was not observed in females.

According to the researchers, the protein p53, involved in the elevation of ghrelin levels in mice, is also responsible for the repair of DNA damaged by UV rays. This would explain the effect of the sun on hunger. The phenomenon would not occur in females due to the presence of estrogen which blocks the activity of p53, they specify.

Scientists also report that a survey of 3,000 Israelis showed that men increase their food intake during the warmer months of the year, unlike women. Moreover, according to an experiment carried out with 27 participants, men who spent 25 minutes in the sun said they were hungrier and their blood ghrelin level was higher.

However, these last results do not not yet conclude that the mechanism in humans is the same as that observed in mice, in particular because of the absence of a control group, can we read in The Scientist.

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