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Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) – Winter and low mood

watch 27/10/2022

In winter, you often feel low mood and not as bright and cool as the summer sunshine here. With longer nights and darker hours, we can naturally release less serotonin. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that helps us […]

In winter, you often feel low mood and not as bright and cool as the summer sunshine here. With longer nights and darker hours, we can naturally release less serotonin.

Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that helps us feel good because it is released during the day, it is activated when exposed to light during the day. Where our sleepy neurotransmitter Melatonin is produced at night and activated in our brain when it is dark and our light exposure is at its lowest.

What is SAD?

SAD stands for seasonal affective disorder and is a form of winter depression that occurs only in winter and is thought to occur as a result of reduced hours of light exposure and resulting impact on production. neurotransmitter output. Like most forms of depression, it can also negatively affect your appetite, mood, social life, relationships, and energy levels.

It can make you feel like a completely different person, which can also make you moody and overwhelmed. SAD begins in the early winter months and can last until the early signs of spring or summer come again. Longer periods of sunlight help activate and support healthy neurotransmitter release and result in SAD remission.

Top Ten Signs of SAD – How to Tell If You Have SAD?

  1. Less cravings, compared to your usual cravings and you may crave sugar and starchy foods due to low energy levels.
  2. Low energy level. If you're tired, it's hard to keep up with daily tasks and commitments.
  3. Feeling sad and low at times, more than you usually do.
  4. Feeling mood swings, such as irritable or more negative and hopeless.
  5. Feeling stressed and pressured towards everyday tasks and in general.
  6. Avoiding people and activities due to low mood, low motivation and energy.
  7. Not sleeping well, difficult to sleep.
  8. Food cravings and weight changes.
  9. Brain fog, or less ability to focus and think clearly.
  10. Body aches and discomfort all over the body.

It is important to be diagnosed by a GP or healthcare professional if you experience any of the above or chronic depression and low mood. This way, they can help you plan your recovery and help support you in getting back to feeling healthy again.

How to help SAD? Find a way to feel better

People who live in cloudy areas, like the UK or as far north or south of the equator may be more at risk of developing SAD because naturally there is less sunlight year-round. Other mood disorders, such as depression, can also put you at increased risk for SAD. A deficiency in vitamin D can also contribute to SAD as it is helpful in supporting a healthy mood. Fewer hours of natural sunlight reduces our absorption and absorption of vitamin D in the body.

Finding a vitamin D supplement that may be right for you for extra nutritional support may be of more help in supporting normal mood and vitality. Light therapy can help people with SAD, using a special type of light that can help produce neurotransmitters. Spending more time outdoors is a must for people with SAD and can help ease symptoms.

Eat what? – whole foods and omega 3

Eating a balanced diet can also help support a healthy mood, including healthy fats, fish, algae like nori or wakame, vegetable oils, such as sunflower or olive, and coconut may also be helpful. Pair with nuts and seeds with whole foods, fresh fruits and vegetables for added vitamins and minerals.

Hanging out with friends can naturally boost mood and neurotransmitters like serotonin. Make sure to include outdoor exercise, walking, running or whatever you like best, for outdoor light exposure and an endorphin boost, (our feel-good hormone) to improve mood and energy.

Help your whole health

Including a few of the above suggestions into your week can help with SAD and put you in better control until the summer sun returns. Herbs like  #passion flower , #chamomile  Roman or  #hops can help relieve stress and reduce feelings of overwhelm, along with #Withania and L-theanine, which promote a healthy mood and sharper thinking with sharper perception.

Finding what works for you is an essential part of recovery and pain relief, and getting some advice from a qualified healthcare professional can help support you in the right direction and finding figure out what might work best for you, to support your overall health. for health only in winter but also in the sunny summer months of the year.

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