By Karin Krisher
It’s definitely winter here in Vermont. The air’s bite is actually louder than its bark due to the wind chill coming from Lake Champlain, and the snow is crunching underfoot. We’ve got mittens and boots and an amalgam of immune support supplements in our coat pockets, but there’s something about winter people don’t always talk about—the blues.
Who can blame us for getting a little down when the sun is still sleeping when we get into the office, and already tucked in bed behind the mountains by the time we leave? The black days and the frigid air just don’t make for a smiley environment.
Sure, there are vitamin D deficiencies to blame for some of us, but for others, it’s really just that we aren’t willing to trudge through the ice to get to our favorite play spots—many of which are closed to the public, anyway. We sleep more, eat more, and generally hibernate, missing out on all the fun we have when we see better, brighter days (roughly around July).
But it doesn’t have to be this way.
There are a few solutions: We could, like geese, migrate. We could ditch the friendly faces and woodstoves and glistening trees, trading them in for pina coladas and sand between our toes. We could hole up in our homes and become wintertime hermits. We could close down the office and put our cars in the garage for six months.
Or, we could talk mood support supplements.
5-HTP, Omega-3s, SAMe, St. John’s Wort and vitamin B have long been touted as mood support supplements.* 5-HTP and St. John’s Wort help support serotonin levels, while SAMe is known for its methylation benefits and its role in the balancing of biochemical reactions in the brain.* The amino acid DMG (in the family of vitamin Bs) is also known for its role in methylation, and supports oxygen utilization and the circulatory system, meaning it also supports neurological function.*
Omega-3s are another story—these essential fatty acids support cognitive function because dietary fats are necessary for the nervous system to function properly. Omega-3s like DHA are extremely important in the formation of cellular membranes of nerve and brain cells. When we experience a deficiency in DHA, structural integrity of those membranes can be compromised.*
A recent LA Times article refers to the benefits of omega-3s: “Across the globe, rates of depression are lower in populations that eat more fish, particularly omega-3 rich fish such as salmon, tuna, sardines and mackerel. Studies have also shown that omega-3 levels are lower in people with depression than in people without.”
We’re not saying plopping a bit of tuna on your plate will have you gearing up for sledding every afternoon, but looking for some support for that all-important organ, the brain, isn’t a bad thing during the dog days of winter.
Especially if you, like us, are hanging out so close to Canada that you’re considering a career in the Mounties.
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.