We may all be ready for spring, but winter is still upon us. When you think of winter, where does your mind trail? Do you think about fires, snowmen, and hot chocolate? Or do you think about cold and flu season? Though the winter months have moments of warmth and comfort, we often hear issues with depression and mood swings from our patients during the winter months. There is no way to deny that winter means paying extra attention to your health and wellness, and chiropractic care can help you stay healthy – physically and mentally in the process.
8 Tips to Help You Beat the Winter Blues
1. Brighten Your Surroundings
Let’s face it; the winter months can be bleak. The days are gloomy, and hours of sunshine are short. This is problematic because your body likes light and to feel the warm sun. To help brighten your surroundings during short winter days, we suggest opening your curtains or drapes when you wake up in the morning. Utilize cushions, throws, and blankets in bright tones to add a sense of snuggly comfort and bring nature into your home with the help of plants.
2. Make Sure Your Diet Includes Lean Protein
Lean proteins are rich in amino acids, which can help with a positive mood. Besides helping with your mood, adding lean proteins into your diet can help you to build muscle, lose weight, support your immune system, and lower your blood pressure. Some lean protein foods you can start eating are white-meat poultry, dairy products, eggs, and beans.
3. Keep Up Your Sleep Routine
Sleep is, without a doubt, a huge component of mood. Without adequate sleep, your circadian rhythm is disrupted, disrupting cortisol rhythms, and impacting hormone production. To get better sleep, our specialists recommend going to sleep and waking up at the same time every day, sleeping in a cool and darkroom, and not using electronics in your bedroom or at least 30 minutes before you go to bed.
4. Make Physical Activity a Priority
Physical activity has been proven to boost mood and decrease symptoms of depression and stress. At Dr. Andrea’s, we suggest starting slowly and building up your activity level. Aim to go on a thirty-minute walk, a few days a week, or complete a beginner’s yoga class twice a week. Starting small and growing your fitness level will help you avoid injury.
5. Seek Out the Sun or Utilize Light Therapy
Getting outside in the winter months needs to be a priority. Sunlight helps balance serotonin activity, increase melatonin production, balance your circadian rhythm, and increase vitamin D levels, putting you in an improved emotional state.
With shorter daylight hours in the winter months, we understand that getting in sunlight can be difficult. The National Institute of Mental Health recommends purchasing a lightbox and sitting in front of it for 20 to 60 minutes at a time from fall until early spring.
6. Listen to an Upbeat Playlist
Music is an effective mood changer. Research shows that joyful, uplifting music can bring people out of a depressed state. Make a playlist and choose uplifting music with positive lyrics. The music will provide an energy boost and get your brain primed for positive thoughts. Check out this list of 101 songs from Chopra that you could add to your playlist.
7. Make Time to Help Others
Volunteering in your free time is a wonderful option to help cure winter blues as well as help someone else. You can contact one of your local nonprofits or homeless shelters near you to find volunteer opportunities. Happiness is contagious and when you help make someone happy this will automatically increase your mood too!
8. Keep Your Nervous System at Peak Efficiency with Chiropractic Care
Chiropractic care can help individuals who struggle with anxiety and depression through spinal alignments. When the spine is aligned, it helps your body function optimally, which allows the mind to focus on what it needs to heal. It also feels good to which can increase your mood.
Staying healthy is the goal to reduce the impact of the winter blues, and we would love to help you on that journey. To make an appointment with Dr. Andrea, head on to our contact page. Together, we can help you beat the winter blues!