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How to Beat the Winter Blues!

Winter can be long, cold and dreary, especially when your motivation to implement those good intentions are at an all time low! - how to beat the January blues

If you live in the Northern hemisphere, then the chances are that there is not much sun around, and even if you catch a glimpse it's more than likely to be extremely cold! You might have started off the year with lots of good intentions, to eat better and exercise more to support your overall wellbeing. However, the reality is you're feeling sluggish, experiencing lethargy, low mood and may even not be sleeping too well! So what can you do? - How to beat the January blues

Boost your mood with vitamin D

Vitamin D is manufactured via our skin through exposure to sunlight, however if you live in the colder climates you will not be making enough of this 'sunshine' vitamin! For those of you who eat fish, the oily varieties can help you up your intake of this vitamin, however be mindful that the sources you are consuming do not contain heavy metals as this can lead to additional toxins being introduced into your body. Eggs and butter (free range organic) are also sources of vitamin D, as are some varieties of mushrooms (Portobello are good sources), and soya (non-gmo and organic versions in moderation). An additional benefit of vitamin D is immune support, which should help to keep those pesky bugs at bay! - How to beat the January blues

Eat more Omega-3 brain food

Sometimes without knowing it our food can have an impact on our brains ability to function healthily! This essential fatty acid is important for mind and brain health, heart, cellular function (help our cells to remain more fluid and therefore communicate better) and skin (dry skin can sometimes be caused by a lack of essential fatty acids within our body). Good sources of this nutrient include oily fish (mackerel, trout, salmon, sardines bearing in mind the sources you consume as above), walnuts, flaxseeds, pumpkin seeds and dark green leafy vegetables (always consume these greens with a little fat such as olive oil or avocado which will ensure properly absorption of their beneficial properties). - how to beat the January blues

Super-boost your comfort food!

For those of us that live in colder climates, we tend to spend a lot more time indoors and end up eating more during these winter months usually because we are cold! Not great for those of us who started the year off with health aspirations which we now see slowly fading away. The good news is that comfort food doesn't have to be loaded with empty calories. Try creating foods that are not only satisfying but also nutritious, so that they release energy slowly and keep you fuller for longer. Check out our kitchen blog for ideas on how you can eat well and remain healthy. - How to beat the January Blues

Don't stop moving

The last thing most of us want to do during the colder months is go to the gym (even if you just spent a fortune on a subscription)! However, don't fear as there are plenty of ways you can keep moving without having to fork out a fortune. My living room also doubles up as my gym, with a exercise mat and a few weights in the corner for me to get my fitness on anytime of the day, without having to leave my home. Walking is absolutely free and all you need to do is factor in that extra time, to walk between stops and stations so you keep on moving. Not forgetting to use stairs instead of lifts wherever possible, and jog up the escalator! The benefits to be had from moving and keeping more active are numerous, however for the purpose of 'beating those winter blues' the endorphins (happy hormones) will help in regulating your mood.

The power of supplements

Finally, although the best way to support your health and wellbeing is via consuming a well rounded diet, based on your individual requirements supplements may offer that additional support you may not be able to get from your food as a result of modern day farming and the way in which our food is now produced. Even if you follow a 100% plant-based, mainly organic diet, there is still a need for good quality bio-available supplements to support your overall health. As a naturopath I would only recommend sources that I use myself. If you are interested in knowing more about the types of supplements I use then you can find out more here.

I hope you found this article useful, and will be able to implement some of the suggestions shared.

Here’s wishing you happiness, health and wellness.

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