• Text size      
  • Send this article to a friend
  • Print this article

Scientists say sunshine can be like drugs

SUNSHINE acts like an addictive drug and has a similar effect on the body as heroin, scientists claim.

Ultraviolet (UV) rays from the sun stimulate the production of endorphins, known as "feel good" hormones that act on the same biological pathway as opioid drugs, research shows.

The study, based on mice, suggests that the desire to bake for hours on a beach involves more than topping up a tan. It may appease our craving for a sunshine "fix", in much the same way as an addict satisfies a yearning for heroin or morphine.

Responding to the Harvard Medical School study, Dr Richard Weller, senior lecturer in dermatology at the University of Edinburgh, said: "If an 'addiction' to sun truly also exists in mankind, it suggests to me that there is a benefit to it.

Contextual targeting label: 
Education

Commenting & Moderation

We moderate all comments on HeraldScotland on either a pre-moderated or post-moderated basis.
If you're a relatively new user then your comments will be reviewed before publication and if we know you well and trust you then your comments will be subject to moderation only if other users or the moderators believe you've broken the rules

Moderation is undertaken full-time 9am-6pm on weekdays, and on a part-time basis outwith those hours. Please be patient if your posts are not approved instantly.

241693