If you're here reading this, it's probably because you are seeking out some ways to cope with Seasonal Affective Disorder.
Winter is easily one of the most problematic times of year when it comes to stress, anxiety and depression (also known as SAD or Seasonal Affective Disorder). Not to mention the fact that when it comes to ensuring that your family and loved ones have met their own needs in terms of their health, it is all too often very easy to overlook your own health and well being. With keeping that thought in mind, this article is specifically intended to lend you with some great pointers that will help to keep you healthy and happy as the cold approaches. So, here are some ways to cope with Seasonal Affective Disorder.
1. What is Seasonal Affective Disorder?
To begin, it is essential to understand what precisely SAD is and how it can be treated in a natural way at the onset of symptoms. Those who experience SAD often have many of the red-flag symptoms of depression, of which include, but are not limited to the following:
- Decreased energy levels
- Difficulty concentrating
- Increase in appetite
- Increased desire to be alone
- Weight gain
Knowing the symptoms of the condition is one of the best ways to cope with Seasonal Affective Disorder.
2. Stay Active
To combat SAD, the first main tip that you may strive to implement into your lifestyle is to plain and simply just keep moving. As temperatures start to drop we often find that our motivation levels drop significantly as well. And with such limited access to the outdoors during cold weather, the vast majority of us tend to simply stay inside and hibernate. Unfortunately, that lack of movement and physical activity, combined with eating winter comfort foods, makes it all too easy to start packing on excess pounds. Try to incorporate some exercise into your days, and you'll feel a whole lot better.
Go for a walk on your lunch break, make a snowman with your family, virtually anything that will get you outside, will in turn do wonders for your attitude. If you can’t make it outside, at least open your curtains or get to a window, the sun’s UV rays are highly effective in keeping us motivated and feeling happier.
2. Eat Healthy Foods
Be sure that your home is adequately stocked with seasonal fruits and vegetables. This is the time of year when illnesses that threaten yourself and your family run rampant. That's why adding the vitamins and minerals that fruits and veggies contain is of the utmost importance. If you are not filling and fueling your body with needed superfoods, you are just not receiving all of the vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that your body requires, which in turn leads to a weakened immune system. This makes you susceptible to colds, the flu, and countless other illnesses throughout the season.
3. Watch Your Calories
As previously mentioned, during the cold months, our bodies tend to start craving heartier foods. While there is certainly nothing wrong with this, one thing to consider is that it is super easy to overeat these high calorie foods. One good tip is to start all of your meals with soup. The heat of the soup provides you with the same comforting sensation, but is lower in fat and calories. Be sure you are making healthy choices as often as possible. The right foods will boost your mood and help you survive the dreary winter months.
4. Use a Light Box
During the cold months there is a drastic decrease in sunlight and our bodies desperately need that daily dose of vitamin D. If you are trapped indoors for the vast duration of the winter months, you may seek to invest in a light therapy box, which basically mimics natural sunlight so that you can absorb that necessary vitamin D that your body is craving.