The winter blues aren’t just in your head. Many people suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). It’s a type of seasonal depression that occurs when the amount of daylight gets shorter. However, the impact of SAD differs.

Some people reported difficulty in managing their day-to-day tasks while others withdraw completely from loved ones, suffering major work and life setbacks. The early symptoms are subtle, but they include increased fatigue, decreased energy and sweet cravings.

Short Days, Long Nights: Why Having the Winter Blues is Not Your Fault

If you deal with SAD, it’s important not to feel embarrassed at being so impacted by nature. The winter blues is a natural and common reaction. Instead, recognize the early signs, so you can combat the blues with meditation and mindfulness. Some people report that spirituality and simple living can help, too. So, read on to get some helpful tools to cope with seasonal depression.

Up Your Aerobic Exercise to Up Your Moods

A brisk walk through the park during the scant daylight hours will help reduce your anxiety and stress while enhancing your mood. And if you can’t get outdoors, a yoga retreat in a sunny, warm room can do wonders as a mid-season pick-up.

Meditate to Increase Your Serotonin Levels

The leading theory behind the cause of SAD in humans is a disruption in the pineal gland. However, transcendental meditation can step in where this disruption occurs to naturally increase serotonin levels. So meditate to alleviate the impacts of winter blues and restlessness.

Say No to Junk Food and Yes to a Better Disposition

It is tempting to gorge on high-impact carbs like pure sugars, pasta and potatoes when you have the winter blues. And although they can provide a temporary high, it ultimately leads to a release in insulin and a drop in blood sugar. But that only leads to more junk food cravings.

This yo-yo pattern not only impacts your mental and physical activity levels but it also frequently leads to weight gain and all the stresses associated with it. So, to protect your brain chemistry, metabolism, and blood sugar opt for nutritious, unprocessed foods.

Remember, if you suffer from the winter blues, don’t let anyone tell you to “just get over it.” The winter blues, also known as SAD, are real. Most people have to jump over real hurdles to overcome the intense sadness and tiredness of seasonal depression. But, with the help of these tips, you can feel better in time.