Five Natural Ways to Boost your Mood

We are entering the dog days of summer. The charm and novelty of sunshine has worn off and the stress of heat has settled in. Whether it is internal Instagram FOMO* or frustration from lack of vacation days, summer time isn’t always smiles and good times. There are a variety of ways to boost your mood and brighten your day to match the sunshine.
*fear of missing out

For ongoing low spirits, sleep trouble and anxiety it is a good idea to have a chat with your medical professionals. Mental health is just as important as physical health. But just likes aches and pains or winter colds, there are lifestyle options to improve your mood and feel better. The odds are good you wouldn’t ignore a low-level lingering headache, give yourself the same grace and self care more mental health and energy - don’t ignore sleep challenges or stress. Check out these five ways to boost your mood.


Alleviate sadness and improve sleep with 5-HTP

Alora Naturals 5 htp

The amino acid 5-HTP (5-hydroxytryptophan) has been linked to improved anxiety, sleeplessness and depression. 5-HTP is made by the body from another amino acid tryptophan which is sourced from animal sources high in protein meat, poultry, seafood, dairy and eggs. Supplement sources for 5-HTP, like Organika, are from the African shrub Griffonia simplicifolia. Once in the body it gets converted into serotonin and melatonin. This helps balance your mood, promote healthy sleep patterns and reduce depression. Additionally studies have shown that 5-HTP supplementation helps to improve metabolism when combined with a calorie-reduced diet and physical activity.


Up your vitamin D - the sunshine vitamin

Research shows an association of low levels of vitamin D and various mood disorders, including depression, seasonal affective disorder (SAD), and premenstrual syndrome. Also vitamin D supplementation may improve symptoms of depression associated with SAD. Conditions such as bone loss, kidney disease, lung disorders, diabetes, stomach and intestine problems, and heart disease are also associated with low vitamin D. Good news: the easiest way to get vitamin D is to head outside. It doesn’t take long, it takes about half the time it takes your skin to burn to get your daily dose of vitamin D. The amount of exposure depends on the time of day and the time of year. You will need more time in the winter - especially the further you are from the equator. In Canada, it is virtually impossible to get enough vitamin D in the late fall and winter - so you may consider a simple Vitamin D supplement.


Boost good brain chemicals with Vitamin B6

Vitamin B6 supports the body to make several neurotransmitters. It is essential for brain development and function, and helps the body make the hormones serotonin and norepinephrine - these can help improve mood. The Metagenics Cortico-B5B6 combines B5 and B6 to help boost energy and metabolism. One way they support energy is by supporting hemoglobin manufacturing, boosting blood boosts energy.

Work your body - improve your mind

In as little as five minutes - 5!?!? - you can boost your mood from exercise. The effects of exercise can have a long term impact on depression. In short, if you exercise today - you will be feeling better tomorrow than if you had not exercised. When we exercise three things happen:
  • we raise body temperature - this is calming
  • we release good brain chemicals - that may ease depression (neurotransmitters, endorphins and endocannabinoids)
  • we reduce immune system reactions that can aggravate depression.
You don’t need to pound the pavement and train for a marathon to get the mood benefits of exercise. Moderate exercise can be gardening, walking with a friend or anything that gets you away from a screen or off the couch and raises your heart rate.

Proven depression support: St. John’s Wort

This garden gem has a proven track record of helping with depression. According to the Mayo Clinic. “A 2015 meta-analysis review concluded that it has superior efficacy to placebo in treating depression; is as effective as standard antidepressant pharmaceuticals for treating depression; and has fewer adverse effects than other antidepressants.” A St. John's Wort supplement can be used to improve restlessness and nervousness and notably calms and improves sleep patterns in some people. This is one herbal remedy that has been used for centuries.

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