Cool ways to beat winter blues

Monday, December 09, 2013 by: Yanjun
Tags: winter blues, exercise, sunlight

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(NaturalNews) Winter is now in full force. During this season, days get shorter and nights colder, and even the best among us can get a little down. According to traditional Chinese medicine, our energy levels fluctuate over the course of winter, meaning it's the best time for some helpful introspection. At this point, the kidneys are the most sensitive, and the emotions stored in this organ are anxiety and fear. And we already know that anxiety and depression are actually two sides of the same coin. Many people also experience low energy levels and lack of motivation during this period. Luckily, there's lot that you can do to prevent these "winter blues" from coming on and to get life back to normal if it is already affecting you.

Let's have a close look at few tips to beat winter blues:

Exercises are important for more than maintaining weight and staying fit

It's the best way to relieve the stresses of life. Plus, the effects of working out can last for hours after you hit the showers. You'll feel more energy throughout the day, and your metabolism level will remain high. Workouts also help your mind by releasing various "feel-good chemicals" that help in improving your mood.

Eat a healthy diet - when and what you eat can have a big affect on your energy levels and mood

It's best to avoid processed and refined foods, such as sugar, rice and breads. They don't have the kind of nutrients that your body needs, and they zap your energy level and affect your mood, causing lack of concentration, depression and mood swings. Include more whole wheat breads, veggies, brown rice and fruits. Drink at least eight glasses of water daily. All these are healthy foods that will provide energy and nutrients to your body and also stabilize your energy and blood sugar levels.

Get some Sun

Most people know that sunlight can provide vitamin D, but did you know that it can also improve your mood? Winter days are much shorter and darker than other months. It's also the time when people spend less time outdoors. Therefore, lack of sunlight can make people depressed. As with exercises, sunlight exposure can release neurotransmitters in the brain that directly affect one's mood. So, try to spend some time outdoors, keep your shades up and sit near windows most of the time. Replace bulbs in your house with "full spectrum" bulbs. They actually mimic natural light and can have the same effect on your body and mind as real sunlight.

Embrace the season

Instead of avoiding the snow and winter weather - look for the best that they have to offer! Try winter sports such as snowboarding, ice skating, sledding or even hockey! Enjoy all these opportunities while they last - after all, winters are there for just a few months every year.

Catch some Zzzz's

Most people want to sleep a bit more during winters. With some discipline and time management, you can easily meet your "shut-eye" needs. Aim for 6-8 hours each night, and it's best to keep your bedtime and waking time consistent. This will normalize your sleeping patterns, and you'll also have more energy throughout the day. However, try not to oversleep - say NO to those 12-hour snoozes on weekends, as they can make you more tired.

All in all, enjoy the winters and have some real fun under the sun. They won't last forever!

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