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Dec 31

Be Merry, Stay Healthy: Fighting Post Holiday Depression

When January 2nd comes around, it’s as if we go from 60 to zero in one day. Many people spend weeks – even months – preparing for the holidays, only to have it last for a short time and disappear abruptly. It’s normal to end up feeling a little down after the emotionally-charged rush of the season. Here are a few tips to help avoid and cope with Post Holiday Depression.

Replace the ReclinerPeople Ice Skating
During the holidays, we often involve ourselves in a lot of socializing, which typically means more eating and drinking; physically and mentally, we can end up feeling a little lethargic. If you’re feeling down, try exercising! Go for a walk around the neighborhood, hit the gym, or be creative and find ways to add movement to your life in as many ways as possible. Physical activity is proven to release endorphins into the body, which will improve your mood significantly.

Take Your Vitamins
Although fresh fruits and vegetables are not in abundance during the winter, you can take supplements to ensure that your body is getting what it needs. One vitamin that can help left your spirits is vitamin D. Vitamin D is known as the “Sunshine Vitamin” because your body produces it naturally when your skin is exposed to the sun. The vitamin is necessary for some regulatory functions of the body and can help ward away depression. If you feel the blues coming on, get out and catch some rays. If you live in an area that isn’t typically sunny during winter, or if you live in an area of cold climate and have to cover your skin a lot, consult a physician about taking Vitamin D and/or B12.

Family and FriendsFriends having coffee together
If you’re feeling lonely after the holidays, seek out support and companionship from family, friends or your community. Spending time with others may lift your spirits and offer growth in your relationships. In fact, those who suffer from any type of depression or stress can benefit from increased social support. If your friends and family aren’t nearby, look into volunteering at a local, charitable organization. Reaching out to help those in need is a great way to feel good and give back while doing so.

Dr. Vinita’s Take:
Aside from incorporating all of these tips into my lifestyle, when I’m feeling down or stressed out, I find that meditation is a simple way to restore calm and peaceful feelings. If you have never meditated before, you can put on some relaxing music and simply breathe rhythmically to reduce stress and anxiety.  In addition, I love to take walks with a loved one and reflect on all the positive aspects of my  life, rather than the negative ones. I find that re-focusing my thoughts evokes gratitude and inner peace to help chase away the blues.

 

 

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