Hello to shorter days, longer nights, and therefor not so much sunshine.
In these conditions, we can naturally start to feel a little somber, our preference of food (and nutrient needs) change, and our type and level of activity can adapt with the season too! So how do we adjust our habits to maintain a healthy mood and movement throughout the winter season? Below we share our top 4 ways.
Step outside and take a moment to notice, appreciate and immerse yourself in your natural surroundings. Studies show the multitude of benefits for mental health and general wellbeing in response to time spent in nature. Given less sunshine, it’s important that we still get outside and soak up the negative ions from nature to support harmony of our internal happenings.
Nourish the Gut-Brain Axis
The gut and the brain are in constant two-way comms. It’s not uncommon for improper gut function to manifest as low mood and brain-fog, and similarly our state of mind can directly impact the state of our gut! This is because our gut bacteria produces a huge percentage of the neuro-chemicals our brain uses to regulate our mood. For example, 70% of serotonin, a chemical responsible for feelings of happiness and wellbeing, is made in the gut! A daily dose of Mitchells Bone Broth Powder or Mitchells Bone Broth Protein Powder is a wonderful way to nourish and support the gut-brain axis!
Address the Stress
Stress, be it physical, mental or emotional, can directly affect the gut. When we activate the sympathetic (fight or flight) arm of the nervous system in response to stress, we compromise blood flow to the digestive system, impede movement, reduce digestive juices, and throw off gut bacteria. When your life is in danger (which is what the body perceives when you feel ‘stress’), digestion is simply not a priority. Address the stress by practicing diaphragmatic (deep belly) breathing, meditation, prioritising time for joy and worrying less about things that you cannot control.
Regulate your Circadian Rhythm
This is the body's internal clock which regulates the sleep-wake cycle over a 24 hour period. To encourage optimal functioning expose yourself to natural light as soon as possible in the morning, dim the lights at night, prioritise sleep by allowing time to unwind in the evening and eat your last meal at least 1-2hours before bed. The circadian system regulates areas of the brain that contribute to mood, anxiousness, and feelings of motivation. Remember, winter is a time for rest, allow yourself to do so!