As the days get shorter and gloomier, some of us may find ourselves feeling unmotivated, lethargic, and withdrawn. The shift from warmth and sunshine to rain, cold, and wind can be quite hard on the body, mind, and spirit.
The sun is our supreme light giver and it brings us (and all of nature) energy and life. A sunshiny day is the epitome of positivity, hope, and good vibes- it is how many of us thrive and find the inspiration and energy to go about our day. When the days become to feel darker and duller, inevitably so do we!
The holidays, warm stews, and fresh baked goods keep us going through November and December but by January we’re singing the winter blues, and by February we can’t stop dreaming about running away to a warm sunny beach somewhere!
This is all-natural and as we are all individuals, we are affected differently by seasonal changes. It is far more common than we think for people to experience feelings of despair and depression during wintertime. Winter can also be quite a lonely season; we may be more inclined to stay in with our slippers than venture out with friends.
The fast change from light to dark, warm to cold can also bring on Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). Many of us will find a way to sail through the winter blues but others may struggle a little more. Symptoms and signs of SAD may include:
- A consistent low mood and feeling down persistently. Akin to a form of depression.
- Irritable, low on energy, and edgy.
- Feeling sleepy, fatigued, or lethargic. Getting up in the mornings when it’s cold and dark will also feel a lot harder.
- Wanting to eat more comfort food. Typically foods are high in carbohydrates.
- Losing interest in day to day activities such as work, social, or leisure activity.
It is thought that the lack of sunshine can disrupt the hypothalamus part of our brain. This in turn may affect hormonal balance and the production of serotonin (known as the “feel-good” hormone). Symptoms can vary from mild to severe. The important thing to remember is that there are treatments that can help!
If you feel like the symptoms describe how you feel, it is advisable to speak to your health professional for further guidance and support. We are never as alone as we feel we are! And even if you don’t feel like you tick all the boxes for Seasonal Affective Disorder, you may experience some of them to a small degree.
Here are some tips to help you get through even the gloomiest of winters!
Simple and Effective Ways to Reduce the Winter Blues:
- Light Therapy- Maintaining a stable sleep/wake pattern is crucial to keeping your mood up in the winter. Light therapy is the best way to achieve this.
- As soon as you wake up turn on bright, full-spectrum lights and surround yourself with bright lighting throughout the day. Keep the shades open and sit close to the windows. Just as importantly, dim the lights in the evening. Use cool blue or full-spectrum lighting the first half of the day and warm lighting the second half of the day.
- Go to bed early and get up early to get the maximum amount of sunshine.
- Exercise in the morning, outdoors if possible.
- Morning exercise boosts mood and energy levels throughout the day and helps you to sleep better at night. Exercising too late in the day can make it difficult to fall asleep.
- Get outside as much as possible. Sunshine and fresh air are the best medicine for the winter blues. Even if it’s cold or cloudy, try to get outside. It will help brighten your mood.
- Try a light therapy lamp. Look for one that emits 10,000 lux of wide-spectrum light and is UV free.
- If you nap, nap early and keep it short so your sleep pattern is not disrupted.
- Stay warm. Hot beverages, stews, and soups, cozy sweaters, boots, and slippers are all great ways to warm up when the temps drop (and nothing beats a sauna or a hot bath to break a winter chill!).
Supplements that may help include the following:
- Vitamin D Since we get less sun in the winter our bodies produce less Vitamin D supplementing with a D vitamin that makes sense.
- Fish oil may also be beneficial for improving overall wellbeing.
- Melatonin – taking melatonin a few hours before bed can help to regulate sleep patterns.
Mirica® Mood Lift contains ingredients that promote a positive mood!
- Palmitoylethanolamide (PEA) – A naturally occurring lipid that promotes a healthy nervous system*
- Tyrosine- An amino acid that is a precursor for mood-regulating neurotransmitters*
- Rhodiola Rosea- An herb that’s been widely used for centuries to promote mental and physical endurance*
Mirica® Mood Lift benefits include:
- Supports Overall Brain Health*
- Promotes a Positive Mood*
- Helps the Body Adapt to Stress of Daily Life*
Mirica® Mood Lift contains no chemical preservatives, fillers, or binders; it is gluten-free and suitable for vegans
The Makers of Mirica®
The maker of Mirica is a developer and manufacturer of science-based formulations produced with the highest quality ingredients.
They have a passion for helping people by creating quality, innovative products that promote health and wellness and enhance the quality of life.
“As winter creeps in this year, there’s no need to be wary. This year can be different. With a little planning and a few tools, this year you can welcome winter with open arms and a jolly heart!”
*The statements on this website have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. The contents of this website are not medical advice and are intended for general knowledge and informational purposes only. You should consult a licensed health care professional before starting any supplement, dietary, or exercise program. Mirica is not intended for use by women who are pregnant or breastfeeding. Keep out of reach of children. Results may vary from person to person.
* In partnership with our friends at Mirica* Photo courtesy of Mirica
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