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How Air Conditioning Increases Weight Gain & Stress

Source; Joyful Belly School of Ayurvedic Diet & Digestion. "How Air Conditioning Increases Weight Gain & Stress" by John Immel.



All summer long, air conditioning blasts frigid air on you in movie theaters, supermarkets, the car, and restaurants. Although the blast may seem like a welcome relief from the heat, the cold air can create some nasty side-effects. For one, artificial cold increases your appetite, causing you to gain weight in the summer, a traditional time to lose weight. Restaurant owners know that air conditioning increases appetite, and lower the temperature to improve profits. Heavy, fried food seems normal within the cool crisp confines of these polar outposts. However, as soon as you step outside into the balmy hot air, the heavy food you just ate leaves you feeling sweaty, overstuffed and tired.
Artificial cooling is also addictive. It compromises your body's ability to deal with high temperatures. You are meant to experience heat in summer, and cold in winter. Your body carefully calibrates and adjusts itself to each season. Part of each seasonal adjustment is a natural change in diet. Air conditioning scrambles these ancient biological programs. If you live in air conditioning, you'll crave foods that are inappropriate for your climate. 
Just like mood swings can be exhausting, sudden temperature changes are very taxing physically. In nature, it is rare to experience a sudden 20 or even 30 degree temperature change. In modern times, sudden temperature changes are the norm every time you step into your car, a store, or your home. The precipitous change causes sudden, intense biological changes as your body struggles to adapt. 
As you enter an air-conditioned space, you may have goosebumps or shiver in order to maintain a comfortable body temperature. Your pores close, your muscles tighten, and your shoulders creep toward your ears just to deal with the sudden drop from balmy summer to frigid arctic. You might even get a crink in your neck, and that's just the tip of the iceberg. The sudden 20 degree drop especially weakens your immunity, increasing your chances of catching a summer cold. 
After you leave the conditioned space and step outside, you are slammed with a wall of heat. It seems hotter than before you entered. Now another reaction begins. Your pores open, blood rushes back to your extremities. Your cheeks flush, and sweat breaks on your forehead. You may feel out of breath just by standing outside. Twenty minutes or so later, your body has adjusted to heat, and the summer sun doesn't seem so alarming any more. Altogether, these changes overwhelm your body's ability to cope and create unnecessary stress.
As you experiment with living life as nature intended, free of climate control, exercise caution if you have a medical condition and always follow the advice of your doctor. To avoid sudden temperature changes, select the outside patio at your favorite restaurant whenever possible. Bring a sweater to the movie theater or supermarket. Take advantages of shade trees and fans to keep cool. At home, use air conditioning very sparingly. Your body will thank you for the consistency of temperature.