It’s become that time of year when the days start to get shorter, and darkness sets in earlier. The beaches, once inhabited by people out swimming, surfing, and getting a tan; are now less populated. People are now wearing jackets or heavy coats, cozying up by fireplaces, drinking hot chocolate and egg nog, and in the mornings, trying to delay the inevitable act of leaving their warm beds.
Not everyone adapts well to the change of seasons; especially the colder, darker seasons. In fact, it’s this time of year that we’re prone to experiencing bouts of depression. But not to worry, for minor cases of depression, there are some easy and helpful things you can do to kick the winter blues. (For more serious cases of depression, I do advise that you consult a natural health practitioner, or a health professional you trust.)
Here are 5 ways you can ward off depression:
1.) Take Ashwagandha – Ashwagandha is a powerful, natural remedy popularized in Ayurvedic medicine for its ability to ease stress and tension, relieve anxiety and depression, and enhance one’s mental and cognitive abilities. After several months of taking this amazing herb, one should notice an improvement in memory. It is also great to take for degenerative brain illnesses such as Parkinson’s disease, Dimentia, and Alzheimer’s. Ashwaghanda has many other benefits such as restoring vitality and energy, and improving one’s immunity. I could go on about its numerous qualities, but since I’m focusing on the subject of depression, I’ll stop here.
2.) Take Brahmi (also known as Bacopa)– Brahmi, just like Ashwagandha, is an herb used in traditional Ayurvedic medicine. It’s been used for thousands of years to treat depression, anxiety, mental illness, epilepsy, memory loss, psychosis, dementia, and more. It repairs damaged nerve cells and neurons. It increases serotonin production. (Serotonin is a neurotransmitter responsible for making us feel happy.)
3.) Take Vitamin D – If you read my articles regularly, you’ll notice that I bring up Vitamin D quite often. That’s because Vitamin D has many, many amazing health benefits. In this case, I’ll just mention that it increases serotonin. Vitamin D can be acquired in supplement form, but the best form of all is from the sun itself (as long as you don’t have any sensitivities to sun exposure).
4.) Take a Walk – Vitamin D is one of the reasons that taking a walk helps to relieve depression. The other reason is that you’re moving your body. Physical activity raises our levels of dopamine, a neurotransmitter that helps us to feel happiness and pleasure.
5.) Eat Gluten-Free – Eat less wheat and gluten, or quit eating them completely. Gluten sensitivity is on the rise, and one of the symptoms is depression. Others include fatigue, ADHD, anxiety, lupus, osteoporosis, cancer, inflammation of the organs, etc. Some people have gluten sensitivities and don’t even know it. Try eating gluten-free for one week, and see if you experience any changes in your body. Do you feel more energized? Healthier? Happier? If so, you may want to consider a gluten-free lifestyle. Changing one’s diet to exclude gluten and wheat can be a big step. It might even seem overwhelming. But it doesn’t have to be all or nothing. If becoming completely gluten-free feels too extreme for you, taper off it slowly. Less gluten is better than only gluten.