Why does sunshine make us happy?

Why Does Sunshine Make Us Feel Happy?

Have you been noticing how the sun has improved everyone’s mood significantly? Well, you’re not wrong to assume that! There is, in fact, scientific evidence to prove that there is a correlation between the sun and your mood. In order to explain this to you, here are the reasons why the sun makes us feel so happy:


     1. May increase serotonin production

Exposure to sunlight can increase the production of our happy hormone serotonin. During the darker winter months, a lack of light may affect our serotonin levels. This can be particularly problematic for those suffering from seasonal affective disorder (SAD) and is why those who are diagnosed may benefit from the use of a lightbox which mimics natural sunlight.


    2. Can help with vitamin D production

Vitamin D is referred to as the sunshine vitamin for good reason. This vitamin is manufactured within the body in response to sunlight reaching our skin. This means that there is an increased risk of developing a vitamin D deficiency during the dark winter months. Low levels of vitamin D are associated with Seasonal Affective Disorder, which is a type of depression that occurs during the autumn and winter, whilst improving in spring.

*Vitamin D can be found in foods such as oily fish and egg yolk, however Public Health England suggest that we all consider supplementing with 400IU daily October to April. 


   3. We spend more time outdoors

Sunny days means that we spend more time outdoors soaking up the sun’s rays. Research has shown that fresh air and nature is associated with greater vitality 1.

What’s more, exercising outdoors can improve mood and even self-esteem 2.

   4. Can improve sleep

Sunlight may actually help to improve our sleep, which ultimately will keep us feeling fresh and happy. Our body has a natural time-keeping clock which is referred to as our circadian rhythm, and we produce hormones which signal for our body to tell us when it’s time to sleep. Exposure to natural sunlight or bright light during the day can help to keep our circadian rhythm healthy and may improve sleep quality and duration. One study has even shown that day time bright light exposure reduced the time it took insomniacs to fall asleep by as much as 83% 3.

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Popular online workplace wellness webinar topics include:

  • Working from home? Smart eating strategies to stay healthy and productive at home
  • Nutrition Strategies To Support Your Immune System and Build Resilience
  • How to optimise your nutrition during times of stress
  • Simple Strategies To Improve Our Mood With Food

Email London Nutritionist, lily@lilysoutternutrition.com for a brochure



‘Lily ran a fantastically crafted session on Nutrition for Lloyds Banking Group, as part of Mental Health Awareness Week. The session on food and how it contributes to our mood was truly exceptional and timely given the current climate we have found ourselves in. Lily’s session was attended by 900+ colleagues and was one of the most interactive and enjoyable sessions I have ever attended, with colleague feedback being overwhelming positive. I really look forward to having Lily come back and hopefully deliver another presentation in the near future.’

Lloyds Bank

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