As we move into the cooler months, it can quickly have you adjusting to the concept of winter blues, or seasonal acute depression – a condition that plenty of individuals are susceptible to, due to a lack of exposure to sunlight during the months of winter. While it might sound more like a poetic description to correlate the winter time with depressive moods, the science is truly not far from the sentiment. Studies such as those by Beute et. al in 2017 show an evident effect that a lack of daily exposure to sunlight can impair a person's state of mental wellbeing.
The fact is that human skin and eyes receive sunlight, and is able to function as a site of synthesis to produce Vitamin D for the body. Additionally, the melatonin precursor – serotonin – is also affected by exposure to sunlight. Serotonin is produced throughout the day, and only later converted into melatonin during the dark hours of night time to help circadian rhythms, body clock and sleep cycle. This is perhaps what explains the effect of seasonal acute depression, which affects the body's serotonin and melatonin levels due to the seasonal adjustment that causes the length of night and day to shift. With enough serotonin produced by the body, an individual is then better able to experience more positive moods and their bodies are able to in turn produce a sufficient amount of melatonin for sleep.
Supplementing Your Body's Need for 'Feel Good' Chemicals
Whether due to a lack of sunlight in winter, or from a deficiency in your individual nutritional profile, mineral supplements and amino acids can help you to ensure that your body has what it needs to produce a healthy supply of serotonin, so you are able to achieve healthy mood regulation, while keeping focus on your daily activities. Tryptophan for instance, is an important amino acid and precursor to serotonin which can influence increased serotonin levels in the brain.
Similarly, magnesium mineral and B vitamin supplements can provide an essential way to support your body's ability to enhance serotonin receptor transmission. Additionally, magnesium supplements are found to aid in bringing a boost to your body's cellular energy, and in turn supports your central nervous system processes to protect against neurological symptoms and disease. Apart from these supplements, studies like those done in 2013 by Wacker & Holick show that you can also consider taking Vitamin D supplements during the winter months, if you have been experiencing seasonal acute depression and want to find a practical way to improve your mood.
Otherwise, we often recommend that our customers keep a balanced lifestyle that features enough sleep, physical exercise, and balanced nutrition to help ensure that their bodies have everything they need to live a positively healthy state of being.
AusVitality: Supporting Your Need for Practical Everyday WellbeingAt AusVitality, we provide a range of adaptogenic supplements that cater to the specific nutritional needs of our customers. If you'd like to explore how some of our amino acid supplements and adaptogens can help you achieve better mood regulation and mental focus, be sure to fill out our contact form so that we can get in touch with you with a suitable recommendation. Our supplements are approved by the Australian Therapeutic Goods Administration, and you will definitely find them with an AUSTL number on their bottles. That way, you'll know that they're made with the best processes and quality available here in Australia.