We are now approaching those winter months where the days get shorter and
(SAD) becomes more prevalent for many of us. It is estimated that a mild form of SAD affects 10-20% of people, and 4-6% of people will experience winter depression.
We typically will spend most of our days indoors working and by the time we head home it’s already dark out. The lack of sunlight can lead to feeling blue, which can then make it harder to get out and enjoy the sun on the weekends. It’s a vicious cycle that keeps us feeling low and tired.
If you are noticing that you’re feeling less like yourself as the season changes its time for you to talk to your healthcare provider to investigate the cause and implement a plan to support your mood and energy levels during the winter months. Common symptoms of SAD are decreased mood or outlook, lack of motivation, fatigue and increased appetite. *See below for a more complete list of symptoms.
As most of us can’t simply move to a sunnier climate during the winter, it’s important to create a strategy to support your mood over the winter months. Below are 5 simple interventions you can start today, and if you need more information or more support speak to your Naturopathic Doctor for more treatment strategies.
5 Tips to help you Through the Winter Blues:
- Ensure you are eating consistently through the day with protein at each meal
- Get a good quality vitamin D supplement and take it daily
- Incorporate healthy omega 3 oils into your daily regime (EPA & DHA)
- Light therapy (i.e. SAD Lamp or Light Box) is a very useful way to increase your light exposure
- IV Therapy to give you an energy and nutrient boost!
*Complete list of SAD Symptoms:
(Symptoms that correlate with a seasonal change)
- A change in appetite, especially a craving for sweet/starchy foods
- Weight gain
- A heavy feeling in the arms or legs
- A drop in energy level, fatigue
- A tendency to oversleep
- Difficulty concentrating
- Increased sensitivity to social rejection
- Avoidance of social situations—not wanting to go out