Thursday, 17 September 2015

The autumn blues and how to fight it


 The smell of rain and soil is in the air, sunsets look like paintings and the colorful leaves turn the world into a real existing impressionism. No doubt, autumn is a festival for our eyes, if only there wasn't this bad weather and the gloomy, short days!

If you live in a region where the seasonal changes are quite big, say Scandinavia or Canada you will most likely have heard of this or even experienced this yourself – autumn depression or "autumn blues", as experts like to call it, can have many symptoms that stress humans physically and mentally with the most common ones being mood swings, tiredness and sluggishness. 

Now to really fully fight or, in the best case, prevent any kind of depression you need to trigger the cause first, right? 

So why do so many people suffer from the autumn blues?

Well, with this kind of depression this has primarily turned out to be the lack of sunshine in our daily lives and the rapid change of it in comparison to the much brighter summer days.
Darkness in combination with bad weather reduce our body's production of serotonin, the 'happy homone' and could even trigger SAV (=seasonal affective disorder) leaving you really feeling even worse. This is also why autumn blues mostly affects people living in areas where this lack of sunshine becomes really obvious with the change of the seasons

Now what can you do against this?  
  
The first measure you can take against the autumn blues is, obviously, daylight: 

  • Try to spend as much time outside as possible while the sun is still up, take a walk or go to jog in the park rather than the gym. According to neuroscientists the daylight, even on overcast days, is still 500-1000 times brighter outside than in your home, so this should already have a really positive effect on how you feel. 
  • Of course you can also consider traveling to a warm and sunny country like Egypt, for instance, to soak up some sun. 
  • However, if you don't have the time to do all this during day time, daylight lamps could be your salvation. These lamps are especially popular in Scandinavia where autumns and winters can be very gloomy, they are very bright and have a similar effect as daylight does. 
 Next to enough exposure to light and exercise, the right diet is also key to keep you feeling happy. Especially in the gloomier seasons you should pay more attention to what you eat because the lack of serotonin might make you crave serotonin-boosting carbs which can quickly make you gain weight if you aren't careful. 

  • So instead of the usual pasta, rice & potatoes, try to switch to delicious pumpkin, sweet potatoes and swedes sometimes, these orange vegetables are all great sources of Vitamin C, antioxidants and fibre. 
  •  Apples and pears might also help lighten up your mood on the darker days because they contain heart-healthy flavonoids and soluble fiber which helps reduce cholesterol and boosts digestion. 
  • Of course you can also treat yourself with a piece of chocolate sometimes since this is known as a 'happy maker' as well. ;)
I wish you all the luck for fighting the depression this season and, honestly, if you do work against it using some of this advice, you should have some pretty good chances to win this fight! 




xx Micky

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5 comments

  1. Very nice & informative post! I'll try to go outside more now haha x
    (New follower here! I really like your lookbook and url :)
    A S T A E R O I D

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    1. Wow thank you, I'll check your blog asap! <3

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  2. Hello. Micky!
    I knew what sunshine was very important for the depression from your post.
    I will fight it with smile :))

    akiko

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    Replies
    1. That's a very good way to go! :)
      Thanks for dropping by, Akiko <3

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