In northern latitudes, short dark days mean more seasonal depression and less ability to make vitamin D. I use light therapy in hopes of lifting my mood.
A study from Finland showed the following risk factors for metabolic syndrome ( defined below, a precursor to diabetes):
- Greater global score on seasonal changes in mood and behavior
- Older age
- Northern area of living
These factors protected against developing metabolic syndrome:
- Greater physical exercise
- Greater alcohol use
- Higher education
- Female gender.
Vitamin D is low in people who live in Northern climates. There is controversy in this area, but I continue to take 5000U a day of vitamin D. Read more by clicking here.
Metabolic sundrome is defined as follows:
Metabolic syndrome was assessed using the US Adult Treatment Panel III of the National Cholesterol Education Program (NCEP-ATPIII) criteria  and defined as having at least three of the following components: the fasting blood glucose level was 6.1 or higher, the blood pressure was high (systolic pressure was 130 mmHg or more or diastolic pressure was 85 mmHg or more), the serum triglycerides level was 1.7 or higher, the serum high-density lipoprotein cholesterol level was lower than 1.0 for men or lower than 1.3 for women, or the waist circumference was 102.1 cm or more for men or 88.1 cm or more for women.