Dr. Mehmet Oz and "Today Show" weatherman Al Roker said weather affects your emotional and physical health and weight loss is more likely during cold weather on the Aug. 11 episode of the Dr. Oz Show.
Dr. Oz said your grandmother was right when she complained that her joints ached on rainy days because there really is a connection between weather and health.
Roker pointed out there's actually a field of science called biometeorology that studies the effects of weather conditions (such as sunlight, lightning and rain) on our health. Studies indicate that about 60 percent of people experience weather sensitivity.
Al, who lost 150 pounds after undergoing gastric bypass surgery in 2002, has successfully maintained his weight loss since then and is doing well. Roker said emotional eating was responsible for his weight gain.
"I'm an emotional eater," Al previously said. "I'm a stress eater. I eat when I'm happy. I eat when I'm sad. I have a problem with food. The only way to fight that is to eat less and exercise more. That's the bottom line."
The 5-foot-8 Al slimmed down from 340 pounds to 190 pounds following his 2002 gastric-bypass procedure. Roker's weight has fluctuated since then, but he maintains it with a healthy diet and regular exercise.
Heart Attacks and Migraines More Likely In Cold Weather
Dr. Oz said weight loss is more likely in cold weather because your body has to work harder to heat you up and your metabolism tends to be higher. Some people do gain weight during the winter, but that's likely due to inactivity, say experts.
Migraines are also more likely during cold weather. In addition, frequent urination occurs during cold weather, while joint pain happens more during rainy weather. Roker said this is because when air pressure drops outside (as it does during a storm), our joints loosen, causing pain.
Research has also shown there are dramatically higher incidences of heart attacks in the winter (up to 50 percent more than during the summer), NBC News reported.
This is because extremely cold temperatures elevate your blood pressure by constricting your arteries and thickening your blood. This makes it much more likely that you could suffer a heart attack during the winter, especially if you do something physically challenging, such as shoveling snow.
Similarly, sunlight has a huge impact on our overall health. Up to 10 million Americans suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), which can lead to depression because lack of sunlight causes chemical changes in our brain, disrupting our moods.
Dr. Oz has previously suggested combating SAD during the winter months by using light boxes to mimic the sun's rays, which can help stabilize serotonin levels.
He also said getting regular exercise helps release mood-boosting endorphins, and suggested supplemental vitamin D-3. While seasonal affective disorder is mostly a winter disorder, about four to six percent of the U.S. population suffers from summertime SAD.