November can be a hard time for many people. The shorter and colder days and thought of a long winter can pose to be problematic for some. In light of this, here are my top 5 mood boosting tips to beat the November Blahs:
- Get Active – A study published in 2013 in the American Journal of Preventative Medicine found that woman who sat for more than seven hours per day were at a 47% higher risk for depressive symptoms compared with women that sat for four hours or fewer per day. Those that sat the most and didn’t exercise at all had the highest risk, with a tripled risk of experiencing depressive symptoms. Sitting is the new smoking! If you can’t make the time to get to the gym – consider walking more frequently…extra steps to the bathroom, park at the other side of the parking lot and take the stairs when you can
- Better yet…Get Active…OUTSIDE – Our bodies have a huge response to light, and under exposure to light can cause fatigue, increased appetite, the “blahs” and a lower sex drive to name a few. This condition is often referred to as SAD (seasonal affective disorder). Studies have shown that SAD may have as much to do with low levels of exercise in the colder months as low levels of light. Therefore, getting active outside will help both! Invest in some proper gear for being active outside, it makes all of the difference to keeping you comfortable and motivated.
- Supplement with Vitamin D – not only is vitamin D important for your immune system, it also helps to produce serotonin and may help to treat depression. Every Canadian should be supporting with vitamin D in the winter! Check with your healthcare provider to see what is the right dosage for you
- Engage with fall scents – it has been found that scents can trigger happy memories. While the pumpkin spice latte from Starbucks comes with quite sugar punch…there is no reason that you cant make a chai tea misto (steeped chai rooibos or green tea with steamed almond milk) with some pumpkin spice on top! Check my last blog post to make your own Pumpkin Spiced Latte.
- Get a plant – there is nothing like some greenery in your house to spruce up your mood. Did you know that your house can be a more toxic environment than outside. Never fear because plants are great at removing formaldehyde and benzene from the environment which are some of the top chemicals in household items like furniture and carpets. While all plants are great, English ivy, gerbera daisy, spider plants and Boston ferns seem to be the best.