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Winter blues have you down?

We've got 6 ways to kiss them goodbye.

By Amber McKenna, Emerita, on Nov 10, 2011 | 0 comments



Here in Portland, Ore., we get our fair share of winter blues. The days become darker, colder and wetter. And at first we welcome the change in seasons, the colorful leaves falling, but it doesn’t take long before the wintry weather sets in and we want to do is start hibernating.
Who doesn’t want to hide a little in the winter? Because of lack of sunlight and the impact that has on your body's various hormone levels and brain chemicals, it’s very common to feel down. Having no energy, sleeping too much or having trouble waking up in the morning...and feeling less productive happens to the best of us (and so does having an increased appetite and putting on a little weight).

But you don’t have to spend the frosty months of winter dreaming of warmer climates!

Check out these 6 ways to kiss your blues goodbye and embrace winter with mitten-covered hands.

1. Get some sun. No, we’re not suggesting hopping a plane to somewhere tropical (though that would be nice). Expose yourself to sunlight as early in the day as you can to get your body’s internal clock back on track. It could be as simple as dragging yourself out of from under the cozy covers to open the window shade, or setting a bedside lamp on a timer to go off a few minutes before your alarm.
Light boxes can also help give you mood-lifting rays with faux sun. Just make sure to get one that filters out UV rays.

2. Work it out. Exercise is always key in improving mood and maintaining a healthy body, but it winter it’s especially important to get up and move on a regular basis.
It may not be your cup of tea to run in the snow and sleet, so take a few yoga or aerobics classes. Or, better yet, ask friends to take a dance class with you so that you can motivate each other to stay active.

3. Set the scene. Cozying up your spaces can help you enjoy the cold weather from the comfort of your home. It’s time to pull out the extra rugs, pillows, blankets and hot water bottles to keep you comfortable this winter.

Don’t forget to keep your scarves, gloves, hats and thick socks on hand to keep you warm and happy when you’re out and about.



4. Take your vitamins. Sunlight does a lot of work to keep our bodies balanced and working right. Plus, your body is no doubt missing all those fresh fruits and veggies you ate all summer. Taking a quality multi-vitamin can help supplement the nutrients you may be missing.

If you only take one vitamin, make sure it’s Vitamin D—this all-star vitamin from the sun helps keep your bones strong and morale up. :)

5. Put down the bread. When the temperature drops, our bodies start craving carbohydrates to give us that warm and full feeling. Caution your cravings and experiment with the numerous root vegetables that are in season this time of year.

6. Get social. If you’re feeling the winter blues, your friends are probably going through the same thing. Start a weekly craft, game or movie night to spur positive interaction. It doesn’t take a brain surgeon to know that being surrounded by good friends is a way to get a positive attitude!

Tell us below or on our Facebook page, what do you do to keep the winter blues away?

Have a happy winter!