When the weather changes, sometimes our mood can change too. Many of us rely on the sunshine to get us out of bed and keep us motivated throughout the day. But when it starts to get cold and rainy it can be really difficult to lift your mood and stay on top of your health and happiness. It can be easy to let the weather determine your mood, especially when you’re kicked down with a nasty cold or flu.
If you’re looking for ways to safeguard your health and happiness this Autumn, these next 5 tips are for you.
Support Your Immune System
Getting sick can ruin your entire month. Cancelling plans, taking time off work and missing out on birthdays and social events. There's nothing worse than being stuck inside when you’d rather be out with friends and family. The best way to combat sickness is prevention! Good news for you, there are a few key things you can start doing now to help fight off any nasty colds coming your way.
Implementing vitamins, minerals and supplements into your daily regime is a simple but effective way to support your immune system during these vulnerable months. If you live in a place where you’re not getting much sun, consider taking a Vitamin D supplement. If you develop a vitamin D deficiency you can experience some extremely frustrating symptoms.
- Fatigue and tiredness
- Aches and pains
- Depression and mood swings
- Getting sick more often and for longer periods of time
Along with taking a vitamin D supplement, make sure your diet is fuelling you with the necessary nutrients to nourish your body. Vitamin C is known for its immune-boosting properties and can help your body fight off any foreign bacteria. Some foods high in vitamin C include oranges, lemons, blackcurrants, broccoli, brussels sprouts and strawberries. Your diet and supplement regime can help you stay on top of your health before you even feel sick at all.
Studies have shown that stress levels can rise when the weather gets colder. This is something you should keep a close eye on. Whether you like to journal, talk to friends or speak with family, processing and effectively dealing with stress is extremely important. Stress doesn’t just affect your mental health but can have huge implications on your physical health. When you feel stressed, a chemical reaction is happening in the body, which involves the release of cortisol throughout your system. The long-term activation of cortisol can lead to anxiety, depression, digestive problems, headaches, heart disease and sleeping issues.
Clearly, too much stress can get the better of you. How you manage stress is going to be different to the next person. Maybe you like to read, listen to music, draw or work out. Whatever it may be, having healthy stress management techniques will help you in the short and long term.
Sorry to break it to you, but just because it’s raining outside doesn’t mean you can stay cooped up by yourself all day. Even if you consider yourself an introvert, you’ll find that spending time with people you care about can drastically change your mood. Grab a friend and head to the local café or grab a raincoat and head out for a walk. Some chit chat can really help lift your mood and motivate you to be productive.
Apart from being beneficial to you, it’s always important to look out for your friends in times like these. Although you might be okay staying inside away from the cold weather, your friend might be silently suffering, waiting for someone to reach out. If you aren’t in the mood to get out and about, we’re lucky to have things like FaceTime! One call or message can do wonders. You’d be surprised how much of a difference this can make.
When the sun is hiding away and the rain starts to pour, it’s pretty unlikely you’ll be wanting to go for a hike, a walk or a run on the beach. If you’re not already at a gym, find your local one and organise a tour. Or better yet, try some at-home workouts! Exercise looks different for everyone and as long as you’re getting your body up and moving, that’s the most important part. You can even pump some jams and have a solo dance party if that’s what you’re in the mood for.
When you exercise you release endorphins (AKA the feel-good hormone). So, when people say they have a post-exercise high, it’s actually a real thing! At some point in your life, you’ve most likely regretted not working out, but have you ever regretted a workout? Probably not. So, it’s time to get up and moving and dance away those rain clouds!
Eat a Balanced and Healthy Diet
If you’re bored and stuck inside all day, it’s easy to fall into some pretty bad eating habits. Boredom eating is a real thing, and it can be hard to catch onto. Try being conscious about when you’re hungry and when you’re just looking for something to do. If you are just looking for something to do, try learning a new healthy recipe. Get your hands on a protein powder and try to make some protein pancakes! A great way to stay on top of your eating habits is meal prepping for the week. You could make 10 protein pancakes, store them in the fridge and have them for breakfast every day. TIP: Your brain will always want to go with the more convenient option, so make healthy eating easy!
Don’t let the colder weather get you down! Be proactive and do something today that will help future you feel a little better. You’ll thank yourself for it.