During these autumnal months as the days get shorter and shorter there is a primal urge inside us that says wrap up warm, stay inside, eat!!!
Its not uncommon for people to experience SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) symptoms. Some individuals will need to seek medial help and support for the severity of their symptoms but for others you can support your system during this period to help alleviate SAD symptoms.
Really although it goes against all logical thought we need get out and expose as much flesh as possible to the daylight (let’s not freeze though!) this boosts out Vitamin D (an important nutrient produced through exposure to sunshine). Even better if you can exercise out doors.
It is also useful to observe a strict routine in terms of what time you go to bed, awaken in the morning and eat. Keeping a routine is important, even if in the early days you feel very tired upon waking this can improve over time.
The food we choose to eat during the winter months can also play a very important part in relieving the symptoms of SAD. Serotonin is derived from Tryptophan and we should be able to boost our levels of Serotonin by enriching our everyday diet with Tryptophan – rich foods.
Foods rich in Tryptophan
Lean meat –turkey, chicken, beef, lamb, pork.
Fish – salmon, cod.
Dairy – plain yoghurt, milk, eggs, cheddar, cottage cheese, parmesan.
Nuts – almonds, pistachios, pecan, hazelnuts, peanuts/soy nuts.
Seeds – poppy, pumpkin, sesame seeds.
Pulses – lentils, chick peas (hummus).
Legumes – kidney, lima beans, soya.
Vegetables – spinach, watercress, cabbage.
Wholegrains – porridge oats.
Fruits – bananas, pineapple, plums, dates, figs, prunes.
Check out our Heat warming Thai Butternut and Chick Pea Stew a perfect antidote to chilly nights.