Change of Season
Aahhh…..cool weather at last! That cool bite in the air gives many of us a little spring in our step, extra energy. We look forward to getting out our sweaters and boots and at last feeling comfortable at a football game or working in the yard. For some of us, however, shorter, cooler days mean something else: increased anxiety or fatigue, craving for carb-loaded foods, reduced motivation, a case of the blues. These are some of the symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder or SAD (well-named!). It’s real – many experience the symptoms to some extent but overall it does not interfere with daily life. Some people really struggle to cope with severe fatigue, inertia, sadness. For those in the later category, a check in with a physician is the first step to rule out other causes. After that, many folks benefit from increasing sunlight in their daily routine. Open the shades or blinds wide at home and at the office. Leave your house lights on and bright a little longer in the evening. Try a sunlight – not the old fashioned kind people used to suntan their faces but a special lamp made to mimic sunlight indoors. Even though it’s the last thing you want, it is helpful to break through that inertia and take a 20 minute walk in the middle of the day in bright sunlight if possible. Also, while you are jonesing for carbs, put’em down and try more high protein foods, raw foods (salads, etc.) and more water. In the meantime, you can count the days until December 21, the winter solstice – after that the light begins to come back, making us all feel better!