Cold weather does cause colds, study finds

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) – Cold weather and sickness seem to go hand in hand. Some people say the notion that cold weather causes colds is just an old wives’ tale. But, this week, a group of researchers at Yale University say their science proves it’s true.

They found even a slight chill increases the rate at which viruses that cause the cold multiply. They also found cold temperatures trigger immune system changes that help the viruses replicate.

Huntsville Doctor Allen Campbell isn’t entirely convinced of the findings.

“My reaction is that usually in the cold weather people go indoors and are touching each other and that’s how the germs are passed,” said Campbell.

Dr. Campbell says the study contradicts one basic principle of virology.

“Usually bacteria grow well in warmer environments rather than cool environments,” said Campbell.

He says the Yale study is interesting and he would like to see more research done on the topic. But whichever side you’re on, bundling up is important.

“It’s always important to dress warm to prevent hypothermia, with these temperatures you have to be very careful to prevent hypothermia,” said Campbell.