Reduce Winter Depression – Take Vitamin D Supplements
The sun can help with two types of depression – economic and personal.
Solar Industry is Hiring!!
They call it a recession – because only 20% of the working force is unemployed. But if you are ones affected and have lost your income and home – it's a full on depression.
Right now the sun is providing one of the best sources for entrepreneurial, investment and job opportunities. For more information see our article entitled Solar Hiring up 26%.
When you are out of work, or like many people underemployed – money problems can really increase the stress and make you depressed. To learn more about how the sun, especially the sunshine vitamin (Vitamin D) that our body produces when exposed to the sun can help reduce depression – read on.
What Are the Symptoms of Depression?
Feeling down from time to time is a normal part of life. But when emptiness and despair take hold and won't go away, it may be depression. How can you tell? Here are some common signs and symptoms of depression:
Feelings of helplessness and hopelessness. A bleak outlook—nothing will ever get better and there’s nothing you can do to improve your situation.
Loss of interest in daily activities. No interest in former hobbies, pastimes, social activities, or sex. You’ve lost your ability to feel joy and pleasure.
Appetite or weight changes. Significant weight loss or weight gain—a change of more than 5% of body weight in a month.
Sleep changes. Either insomnia, especially waking in the early hours of the morning, or oversleeping (also known as hypersomnia).
Irritability or restlessness. Feeling agitated, restless, or on edge. Your tolerance level is low; everything and everyone gets on your nerves.
Loss of energy. Feeling fatigued, a lowering of vitality, sluggish, and physically drained. Your whole body may feel heavy, and even small tasks are exhausting or take longer to complete.
Self-loathing. Strong feelings of worthlessness or guilt. You harshly criticize yourself for perceived faults and mistakes.
Concentration problems. Trouble focusing, making decisions, or remembering things.
Unexplained aches and pains. An increase in physical complaints such as headaches, back pain, aching muscles, and stomach pain.
Research shows correlation between low vitamin D and high parathyroid levels in depressed people
Is it possible that vitamin D benefits depression? A new study says it does, and raises the intriguing possibility that boosting blood levels of this crucial vitamin might help lift or even prevent depression in many.
The study, conducted by VU University Medical Center in Amsterdam, speculated that depression may be the consequence of inadequate levels of the "sunshine vitamin". Noting that about 13 percent of older individuals have symptoms of depression, the Amsterdam study cited numerous underlying causes of D vitamin deficiency among the elderly, including less sun exposure as a result of decreased outdoor activity, and different housing or clothing habits.
The Amsterdam research, which tracked over 1200 people aged 65 to 95, showed that blood levels of the vitamin were 14 percent lower in individuals with major and minor depression compared with non-depressed participants.It was also revealed that, in comparison with non-depressed people, patients with minor depression had five percent higher parathyroid hormone thyroid levels and those with major depressive disorders but levels of the hormone were a surprising 33 percent higher in those with major depressive disorder.
The Amsterdam study correlated two important facts: one, inadequate levels of D vitamin cause an increase in parathyroid hormone levels, and two, overactive parathyroid glands are frequently accompanied by symptoms of depression. It was further noted that the depression symptoms disappear after the restoration of adequate D vitamin levels.
The Amsterdam study stopped short of affirming that the vitamin can prevent or treat depression, but called for additional study to investigate the possibility. High parathyroid hormone levels can be treated with higher dietary intake of vitamin D or calcium and increased sunlight exposure, the researchers said, and because the levels of both substances are predictable indicators of depression such treatment has real preventive potential.
However, it must be determined whether changes in levels of the vitamin lead to depression or are a result of it.
Note: Among the scientists at NIMH are many of the most famous names in psychiatry. They know that nothing could be a crueler message than to tell those suffering from major depression that physiological amounts of vitamin D will cure it. But my personal opinion – Vitamin D has so many well-documented benefits – I'm going to take it any way and recommend it for any depressed people I run across.
Vitamin D Helps Cure the Winter Blues
Want more evidence?
Seasonal affective disorder, or SAD, is a situational mood disorder brought on by decreasing daylight in the winter months. High doses of vitamin D during these months have proven to be a very effective natural remedy for SAD, leading most practitioners to believe that normal neurotransmitter function depends in part on adequate vitamin D synthesis.
Vitamin D levels are inversely related to those of melatonin, another mood-regulating hormone. Melatonin helps modulate your circadian rhythms, with darkness triggering melatonin secretion by the pineal gland within your brain, bringing you down gently at night for sleep. Insomnia, mood swings and food cravings are influenced by melatonin. Sunlight shuts melatonin production off, while triggering release of vitamin D — that’s why doctors recommend getting outdoors as a remedy for jet lag.
Most of us can sense the positive influence of sunlight in our own lives by the immediate lift we get from taking a walk outdoors on a beautiful sunny day. Now there may be many factors at work that brighten our mood in such cases, but sun exposure is almost certainly a critical piece. Soaking in the warmth of the sun is one of the most relaxing activities we share with all living creatures — just watch a cat dozing in a beam of sunlight.
Vitamin D Supplements
If you want to protect yourself from the onset of the winter blues (not to mention reduce your risk of colds and flu) I recommend taking Vitamin D supplments.
For more information about what type of Vitamin D supplements to take, how much to take, and which ones I recommend click here
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