If you get the winter blues, you may be looking forward to the cooler autumn temperatures but dreading the eventual arrival of winter.
While many people turn to prescription antidepressants to manage seasonal depression, natural remedies are easier on your body and often just as powerful and effective. If you want to the beat the blues this winter, here are 4 easy and natural ways to do it.
1. Soak Up the Sun
As simple as it is, just opening up the curtains and blinds during peak daylight hours can naturally boost your mood. When the sunshine hits your eyes, your body secretes "feel good" hormones like serotonin, leading to a happier disposition.
But if you really want to make the most of those brief sunny days, bundling up and getting outside can ward off winter depression even more successfully. When sunlight hits your skin, it sparks a chemical reaction that converts a naturally occurring hormone into vitamin D, which is another natural mood booster.
2. Use Aromatherapy
To reap the benefits of aromatherapy at home, you can simply light a candle with an uplifting scent or diffuse a mood-enhancing essential oil. When at work or school, you can utilize aromatherapy by simply dabbing some essential oil on your pulse points.
Scents proven to provide a natural mood boost include bergamot, lemon, jasmine and vanilla. If your winter blues are paired with anxiety or sleepless nights, lavender and roman chamomile are two excellent oils that battle depression, anxiety and insomnia.
3. Try a Depression-Fighting Tincture
When used properly, herbs are a fantastic way to boost your mood. One way to make the most of herbs is to take them in the form of a liquid tincture. While tea is soothing and effective, it takes a long time to steep. A tincture, however, is ready for immediate use whenever you need it.
A powerful tincture for fighting depression is one that contains St. John's Wort. Known as Hepericum perforatum in the scientific community, St. John's Wort has been used as a natural depression-fighting herb for centuries.
While modern doctors typically shy away from herbal remedies in favor of synthetic pharmaceutical medications, many physicians break that rule when their patients are feeling blue. Understanding the power of St. John's Wort, they often recommend the herb, appreciating its lack of side effects.
4. Season Your Meals with Saffron
Though turmeric has recently gained recognition for combating many physical ailments, saffron is believed by many to be the best spice for fighting seasonal depression.
In fact, just 30 mg of saffron eaten each day has been shown to relieve depression just as well as prescription antidepressants without all of the potential side effects.
If you get the winter blues, begin preparing for the chilly season by trying these four actionable tips. Equipped with a way to fight seasonal depression naturally, you can actually look forward to winter and all of the festivities within it.