Black lipstick: Here’s how to pull it off
Black lipstick: Here’s how to pull it off

Jennifer McShane

‘Meghan is right. Working mothers do have to choose between being present or being paid
‘Meghan is right. Working mothers do have to choose between being present or being paid

Amanda Cassidy

What to try this weekend: Gluten-free vegan churros with a caramel dipping sauce
What to try this weekend: Gluten-free vegan churros with a caramel dipping sauce

Meg Walker

How to increase your confidence and why it’s crucial
How to increase your confidence and why it’s crucial

Niamh Ennis

The scariest thing about Halloween? Competitive parenting
The scariest thing about Halloween? Competitive parenting

Sophie White

Add some colour to your living room with these punchy cushion designs
Add some colour to your living room with these punchy cushion designs

Megan Burns

Five perfect matte lipsticks that your mask won’t budge
Five perfect matte lipsticks that your mask won’t budge

Holly O'Neill

Slightly Christmassy movies that are totally acceptable to watch before Halloween
Slightly Christmassy movies that are totally acceptable to watch before Halloween

Lauren Heskin

This Glenageary home with a charming double-height extension is on the market for €1.875 million
This Glenageary home with a charming double-height extension is on the market for €1.875 million

Megan Burns

Surrogacy: ‘As soon as I lay a foot on Irish soil I become a legal stranger to my son’
Surrogacy: ‘As soon as I lay a foot on Irish soil I become a legal...

Amanda Cassidy

Image / Editorial

Yes, Your Brain Is More ‘Sleepy’ During Winter


by Jeanne Sutton
16th Feb 2016
Yes, Your Brain Is More ‘Sleepy’ During Winter

Don’t know about you, but we’ve been very foggy folk of late. Waking up has been a struggle and we seem to only be able to process episodes of The Good Wife, never mind all those election debates. Can’t cope. Our brains can’t deal when the air outside is cutting our faces like daggers.

Turns out this sluggish brain activity we’ve been experiencing might actually be caused by science, and not just a general ughhhhh at life while we wait for summer.

A study from Rockefeller University and published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences suggests that our brains behave differently depending on the time of the year. Our brain waves have seasons, essentially. In the study, 28 people were asked to perform two types of cognitive tasks and different times of the year. Each person was attached to a brain scanner while they performed a ‘sustained attention task? – this was pressing a button as soon as a stopwatch went off. Same process with the ?working memory task? where people had to look at a series of letters and discern if the same consonant was being repeated. For each task, ?performance? remained the same throughout the year. However, ?brain activity? differed. Some times of the year requires more mental effort.

For the button task – ‘sustained attention? – brain activity was higher in the summer and lowest in the winter. For the ?working task? brain activity peaked in the autumn and was lowest in spring. The researchers think this may have something to do with neurotransmitters in the brain and how serontonin levels are higher in the summer and dopamine rises in the autumn.

We’re not remotely scientists, and while it doesn’t seem like winter sluggishness has found it’s lightening bolt of existence in this study, it is interesting that our attention isn’t sharpest during the winter. So next time a co-worker calls you out on being dopey, hit him or her up with some, ?Well, there’s actually a study??

Via The Science of Us

Also Read

Yes, Your Brain Is More ‘Sleepy’ During Winter
EDITORIAL
5 houseplants we guarantee you can keep alive

For those who buy houseplants with the best of intentions and end up killing them, here’s a selection you’ll be...

By Hannah Hillyer

Yes, Your Brain Is More ‘Sleepy’ During Winter
EDITORIAL
8 easy ways to keep your brain healthy that you can do right now

Your brain health is just as important as that of the rest of your body, says psychologist and neuroscientist Dr...

By IMAGE

Yes, Your Brain Is More ‘Sleepy’ During Winter
EDITORIAL
Trinity Tales: ‘Front Square was her garden, and the city was her playground’

Annie Gatling, now Colleran, knew Trinity College was for her when she saw Front Gate from the top storey of...

By Amanda Cassidy

Yes, Your Brain Is More ‘Sleepy’ During Winter
EDITORIAL
How to limit drips and brush strokes while painting kitchen cabinets

Painting kitchen cabinets can be transformative and can be achieved relatively low-cost, but you need the right equipment, and a lot of...

By Amanda Kavanagh

Yes, Your Brain Is More ‘Sleepy’ During Winter
EDITORIAL
‘Romy & Michele’ actress Cortney Wolfston on being fired while pregnant

“I was confused. Hadn’t I just been told this was a perfect time to be pregnant?” she questioned. Actress Cortney...

By Sarah Finnan

Yes, Your Brain Is More ‘Sleepy’ During Winter
EDITORIAL
‘Meghan is right. Working mothers do have to choose between being present or being paid

Not everyone was happy about the Duchess of Sussex getting involved in US politics. But her letter on behalf of...

By Amanda Cassidy

Yes, Your Brain Is More ‘Sleepy’ During Winter
premium EDITORIAL
Business Club members get your complimentary tickets to The IMAGE Business Summit 2021

Don’t miss this year’s IMAGE Business Summit, with an expert line-up, skills masterclasses, keynote addresses and more.Back by popular demand,...

By Shayna Sappington