Winter is rolling around, and it almost seems like someone has dimmed our happiness button. The freezing temperatures can not only damp our spirits but also alter our circadian rhythm, leaving us with hardly any mood-boosting serotonin. Known as the seasonal affective disorder (SAD), it can lead to symptoms like weight gain, carb cravings, low energy levels and dwindling sex drive. So what do you do to keep your summer spirit alive when the sun disappears? We give you a low down.

1. Turn On the Light

If you are spending the majority of your time arrested in your room, invest in some LED lights and fluorescent bulbs to reset your internal clock and elevate your serotonin levels. Switch it on for 30 minutes while you eat your breakfast or check your emails every morning. Depression vs Sadness; Why People Should Stop Using the Term ‘Depressed’ Loosely

2. Plan More Recreational Activities

Talking to your friend or a family member may help you beat the winter blues. According to a study performed by the University of Vermont, cognitive behavourial therapy, a form of psychotherapy, can help alter the negative thought patterns. So schedule those weekly pedicure visits with your best friend to do away with any low feeling.

3. Combat SAD with Negative Ions

You must have read in your sixth-grade science about the negative ions, atoms that have an extra negatively charged particle. It turns out that the same negative ion is prevalent in summer outdoor and is critical to fighting depression. A study performed by Columbia University found that the use of an electrical ioniser machine can combat SAD by mimicking summer air. Winter Wellness Mantra: 6 Ways to Boost Your Immune System in the Chilly Weather

4. Stay On Top of Your Vitamin D

Vitamin D can play a significant role in your mental health, and low levels of the vitamin can bum you out. The best idea is to ensure that you get adequate levels of vitamin D. If it is not possible to soak in the sun, the best way to beat the blues is to take vitamin D supplements. Vitamin D can bolster everything from your colon, bone and breast health. Ayurvedic Kadhas or Concoctions to Avoid Getting Sick This Winter

5. Perform Cardio Indoors

If your jogging track is covered with ice, the best way to get your heart rate up as well as boost your mood is to do cardio indoors. According to a recent study, moderately depressed people who did brisk walk three times a week, noticed a definite shift in their mood. Intense strength training can also release a lot of serotonin and significantly reduce any symptoms of SAD.

In the end, eat lots of dark chocolate packed with powerful flavonoids to improve your mood. Just be mindful of the portions and take it in the account of your daily overall calorie intake.

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Dec 02, 2019 12:10 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website