12 Tricks to Beat the Winter Blues
Since the beginning of fall and now into winter, do you feel more tired, sleepier, and more often depressed than usual? Do you find it challenging to wake up in the morning while it is still dark outside? Does the fact that when we get off work, it is already dark, affect your mood? Do you feel lazier in winter than in the summer?
If you have those feelings, I want you to know that you are totally normal! Some people get affected more than others with the winter blues. There is a direct relationship between the reduction in the amount of daily sunlight and the body’s production of the serotonin.
Sunlight triggers the production of serotonin. This hormone is associated with boosting mood and helping a person feel calm and focused. In sharp contrast, darkness triggers the brain to make another hormone called melatonin. This hormone is responsible for helping you sleep. Is it any wonder that the shorter days and longer nights slow us down both mentally and physically.
I’m so grateful that we don’t live in Alaska! I always look forward to December 21st because I know I will notice that days are getting longer. Fortunately, there are some simple ways to counteract the dark days of winter. Your body makes serotonin from tryptophan, which is found in high-protein foods. Serotonin production is enhanced by Vitamin D. It is found in fortified products, such as milk, orange juice, whole grain cereals, and yogurt.
If you have the winter blues, here are some tricks you should try to beat it:
- Get a Therapy or Happy Lamp! I use mine every morning and it helps.
- Open your curtains and blinds to let the natural light gets into your house.
- Eat organic old fashion rolled oats in the morning to top up your B vitamins. Don’t add sugar to it because it will make you crash! Instead, add 1 tsp of cinnamon and 1/2 cup of blueberries. Get more oat meal recipes here:
- Improve your wakefulness by taking between 2,000 to 4,000 iu of Vitamin D3 each morning with your breakfast. This vitamin also helps improving your bone health and immunity against heart disease & cancer. You can get the supplement of vitamin D at your favorite natural health store.
- Do 20-30 minutes of moderate exercise per day (5 or more days a week). Use videos or hit the gym.
- Exercise outside to get the natural light as much as possible, no excuses, just dress adequately for the weather.
- Eat plenty of raw vegetables; 6-8 portions (1/2 cup per portion). Eat less fruit as it is higher in sugar.
- Eat organic eggs, raw cheese, organic turkey, raw nuts, salmon from the ocean, organic tofu, and pineapple.
- One hour before bedtime, stay away from your computer and phone. Shut off some lights to let the melatonin hormone kicks in naturally. It will help you sleep like a baby.
- Relax and Meditate for 10 to 20 minutes before bed.
- Stay on the same sleep pattern to improve your sleep quality. Try to go to bed at the same time all week and wake up at the same time.
- Stay in contact with the people you love. Call, FaceTime, text and see them as much as you can.
Don’t let the weather bringing you down. Use the tools I’m sharing with you and let’s beat the winter blues together:)
Get more tips here: 8 Scientifically-Backed Ways to Beat the Winter Blues