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10 Tips To Improve Your Winter Mood

winter exercise from Real Food For Life

7.  Exercise
Exercise is good for so many things so it’s not surprising it helps with your mood. Research has linked exercise with higher levels of serotonin. Exercise is also linked with increased dopamine levels, which causes relaxation, and endorphins, which take away the pain. If that sounds like a powerful combination – it is.

8.  High Quality Protein
One can’t talk about serotonin and tryptophan without talking about turkey. Many people have heard that the extremely high levels of tryptophan in turkey are what causes that relaxed tired feeling after a Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner.  Many researchers now think this is kind of an urban myth. A turkey dinner certainly would raise your serotonin levels but much of the effect is simply from the huge quantity of food consumed. Your body just needs to focus all its energy on digesting! Turkey and white meats are usually more balancing for your body than beef, pork or other red meats. Lowly beans contain extremely high amounts of balanced proteins plus provide many other benefits for your body and the environment.

9.  Enjoy Your Tea
Nothing is more soothing that a cup of tea during the colder months of the year. Another study from Finland shows that 2,000 surveyed Finns who drank black tea every day reported fewer incidences of feeling down or depressed compared to Finns who weren’t regular tea drinkers. The study also shows that the theanine naturally found in tea helps calm you down. Herbal teas can have similar benefits depending on the herbs used and they usually don’t have caffeine. Green tea is now known to provide a host of health benefits.

10. Get to Bed on Time
If your serotonin/melatonin balance is messed up one thing you can do is develop routines that tell your body that you want to go to sleep. This will start the melatonin cycle early so that it can be finished early and you can enjoy waking up properly the next day. The old “early to bed, early to rise” saying works.

Read more: Depression, Health, Life, Mental Wellness, Women's Health, ,

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Diana Herrington

Diana Herrington turned a debilitating health crisis into a passion for helping others with healthy, sugar-free, gluten-free, eating and cooking. After testing and researching every possible healthy therapy on her delicate system she has developed simple, powerful principles which she shares in her recent book Eating Green and Lean, and as host to Care2 groups: Healthy Living Network and Healthy Cooking. She is the head chef at Real Food for Life, where she shares recipes and tips. Sign up for the Real Food for Life weekly newsletter or catch her on Facebook or Twitter (@DancinginLife).


+ add your own
5:56AM PST on Nov 9, 2013

On the gloomy winter days I use the daylight bulbs in my North facing Canadian apartment and it makes a huge difference in how I feel. That and a brisk walk outside really helps clear the cobwebs and brightens my mood.

4:15PM PST on Feb 26, 2012


2:36AM PST on Feb 16, 2012

You know this article was MUCH more helpful than the one that had Seasonal Affective Disorder in the actual title of the article....Thanks!!

9:52PM PST on Feb 15, 2012

This is all good advice. Taking a vacation to someplace sunny and warm can also help, but isn't always an option for everyone.

10:15AM PST on Feb 15, 2012

Eating chocolate does help for a little while.

6:15PM PST on Feb 7, 2012

Exercise outdoors!

2:14AM PST on Feb 1, 2012

I don't know if I have SAD, but I don't seem to have any energy at all right now.

I will try some of these ideas and see if they work.

6:26PM PST on Jan 26, 2012


5:07PM PST on Jan 24, 2012


9:34PM PST on Jan 22, 2012

I like the advice and I can see what this hard work push that I manage with stimulants (caffeine and chocolate), going to bed late, and long exerciseless hours in the office does to offset all of the other good things I do on the list...

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

people are talking

Interesting article thanks for sharing

thank you

That cat acts just like one of mine he/she sure loves that guy.


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