5 Ways To Beat The Winter Blues

Feeling blah? Here are 5 ways to beat the winter blues
Feeling blah? Here are 5 ways to beat the winter blues

The cold temperatures. The limited daylight hours. The grey skies and dirty, slushy snow. Winter has a way of dragging our moods down, and in Canada, the season can seem to last forever. Don’t let the blues take you down for the season, though. Follow a simple tactical plan to get you feeling more chipper and positive–before you know it, spring will be here.

Take an omega-3 fatty acid supplements

Supplements of this essential fatty acid havebeen shown to help relieve depression. While there are food sources of omega-3s, such as salmon, mackerel and herring, taking a supplement is a simpler way to ensure you get sufficient amounts of it on a daily basis.

Use a bright indoor light

Invest in one of the lamps on the market designed to help alleviate Seasonal Affectiveness Disorder. Exposure to the flourescent light on a daily basis can help provide similar benefits as an antidepressant medication. The light it provides is similar to natural light. If you don’t want to splurge on this type of lamp, make an effort to get outside in the daylight and throw open those blinds so that more natural light flows in,

Fill your kitchen with foods that boost serotonin levels

When your serotonin levels are low, this can lead to depression. You can help boost your mood by ensuring your diet includes foods that help increase your serotonin — and this includes milk, nuts, avocados, bananas, peas and beans. Plan meals throughout the winter season that use these ingredients to ensure you’re getting a good mix of these mood boosters. Also, while aiming to eat more of these foods, resist the simple carbs you crave (that’s the doughnuts, for example) and include more complex carbohydrates in the form of whole grains.

Make time to exercise daily

If the chilly temps have derailed your fitness regimen, make a plan to get back on track. Whether that’s learning to embrace winter sports or finding some fitness apps so you can workout at home without setting foot in the cold, figure out what it takes to get you to work up a sweat regularly because exercise helps your brain release feel-good endorphins.

See your friends

Even though you may feel like hibernating, the lack of social interaction may make your winter blues even worse. So don’t isolate yourself just because it’s cold outside. Make a weekly plan to meet up with your buddies for a bite or register for that language class you’ve always wanted to take–whatever it takes to get you out of the house regularly and interacting with people.

Karen Kwan

Karen Kwan

Karen Kwan is a freelance writer based in Toronto. Her work has appeared in Flare, Elle Canada and ElleCanada.com, Glow, Metro, Huffington Post Canada, Travelife and Travel + Escape. She also runs her blog, HealthandSwellness.com, where she writes about health, beauty, fitness and lifestyle.

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