Winter fatigue is so common: do you ever feel like days can be more of a slog during the cold winter months? There is a biological reason for this: less sunlight and fewer hours of it lead the body to produce more melatonin, a hormone that makes us feel sleepy. Indeed, people that find sleep difficult seek to get more melatonin through supplements so it is no wonder that if our body produces more, we feel more drowsy. 1 in 15 people may even be affected by Seasonal Affective Disorder, a mood disorder with symptoms of depression, anxiety, sleeplessness and weight loss. So we know the cards are stacked up against us a little bit more in winter; how do we react?
What we can do on an individual basis
We can exercise the factors that are (somewhat) within our control: diet, exercise, sleep and stress.
We need to eat more energy giving foods and cut back on those that give us quick sugar boosts then leave us low afterwards. We need more iron and especially more vitamin D during the winter.
We need to get outside and get our heart rates up. Exercise helps us by conditioning our body and releasing endorphins which make us feel happy.
We need to sleep well: sleeping helps keep us well rested and keeps stress at bay.
Fighting stress: however you know how. Stress is more burdensome in the winter months when daylight hours are shorter and the sun is less plentiful. If you need extra help managing stress, chiropractic is a great modality.
How we help at Associates in Chiropractic
We help by keeping the nervous system regulated. When subluxation is creating an impingement on the nerve, thinking clearly becomes harder and the body doesn’t function as it should. This only contributes further to feelings of fatigue or emotional distress. By maintaining the proper alignment of the spine and treating tense muscles, we encourage stress to go down and energy to go up!
Dr. Albert Stabile, D.C.