I am always so tired during the winter months and there seems to be little remedy for it. My depression peaks at this time of the year, as it does with several others. Seasonal Affected Disorder. Four to six percent of people may have winter depression or ten to 20 percent have mild Seasonal Affected Disorder (“Seasonal Affected Disorder”, 2000).
What I am trying to get at is that you are not alone if you feeling this depression. You may be tired, gaining weight, feeling alone, feeling overly sexual, feeling no sexual want, wanting sweet or even salty food. It is a constant struggle for me to continue to get out of the house and continue.
I do have tricks up my sleeve though that may be able to help you! I know that sunlamps may be expensive, but I can tell you that it is all worth it. Even just fifteen minutes a day can help you wake up in the morning. The feeling to want to rely on caffeine is undoubtedly a thought for many people during this time but it can also make the problem worse (at least it does for me). I notice if I intake too much caffeine through coffee that I become tired and sluggish. Slowly fading away into a nap for reasons unknown to me; until I started doing some research on a brain chemical called adenosine. This chemical and the transmitters is the reason behind being sleepy. Coffee makes you urinate, and when you urinate your blood thickens; when your blood thickens, there is a little less oxygen in your brain to help it to keep functioning (Scott, 2016). Doctors at the Mayo Clinic suggest to only consume 2-4 cups of caffeinated drinks. This includes soda, and to limit your sugar intake.
How does one take care of their oxygen levels though? Water, exercise, and mindfulness. The more cardiovascular exercise you can do the better. Although yoga is an amazing attribute to add to your daily journey, perhaps adding in a vinyasa yoga practice would help to raise the blood levels to your brain. Exercise frees the blood to flow more energetically to the brain.
Look, I know it is hard. Believe me, I know how hard it is to get motivated when you’re already in a slump, but if you start to make a routine you would be amazed at what you can do. Do not make it a resolution either, make it a lifestyle. I know that in the past years I have found that my SAD has grown to progressively rising levels, but I also notice the more I do (the more active I am in my lifestyle) the better I end up feeling towards the end of the day.
Today I had three cups of coffee and crashed hard and had very little water to follow it up with. My dietary needs were also not met. I am a vegan and need to ensure that my protein levels are high, but I did not do that today. Instead I fell asleep and woke up feeling like shit. So, tomorrow I intend on following my daily routine over again.
Thanks as always to Jenn Bovee.
Light up the Darkness,
Scott. (2016, April 16). Why does coffee make me sleepy?. Driftaway Coffee. Retrieved from https://driftaway.coffee/coffee-make-sleepy/
Seasonal Affected Disorder. (2000, March 1). American Family Physician. Retrieved from https://www.aafp.org/afp/2000/0301/p1531.html