Having spent seven years living in sunny Arizona, I am still growing accustomed to the fact that outside of the desert, it gets cold in the winter. It’s always a challenge to try to maintain a balance between physical activity (keeping the lymph moving) and allowing yourself the introspection and rest which is absolutely essential for the season. Here’s a few strategies to help support your process this winter.
1. Vitamin D! Since we’re not getting it from direct sunlight in the winter, we can supplement it in the form of cod liver oil or the actual vitamins. Cod liver oil is very high in both vitamins A and D. I like Green Pasture’s fermented cod liver oil, but Carlson CLO is also good. If you want to experiment with more vitamin D (without getting too much vitamin A), Mercola.com offers a vitamin D spray called Sunshine Mist. You may want to look into vitamin D testing before taking high doses.
2. Get a high intensity SAD lamp (10,000 lux). The Sandbox Sunlight Jr. SAD Light Therapy Light Box is the one I am saving up for! Otherwise, get as much sunlight as you can during the day. This can help brighten your mood and synchronize your sleep patterns.
3. Speaking of sleep, let yourself get some! According to the book Lights Out: Sleep, Sugar and Surviva, even 9 or more hours of sleep can really help during the winter. The book also recommends blackout curtains–so that you can sleep in a completely dark room. (Aluminum foil is also an option, if you can get your significant other to allow it.)
Any other strategies you’ve found effective in the winter? Please share!