It’s that time of year again. The snow is flying, the days are short, grey, and dreary. The alarm goes off and it’s so dark and cold you’d much rather turn over and cuddle in for the rest of the day then pry yourself out of that physically and mentally comfortable environment. You may have noticed you have some increased pain. Maybe you’d rather not face the day due to the increased anxiety you have been dealing with. Maybe you’re fighting depression and fatigue.
Maybe you’ve been more irritable and less understanding toward your children or spouse. Symptoms of SAD may also consist of morning sickness, overeating, craving sugary foods and/or carbohydrates, weight gain, trouble concentrating, and withdrawal from friends and family. If you have any of these symptoms, you may be starting to wonder what is going on with you. Well I’m here to tell you, it’s NOT in your head! It’s actually in your entire nervous and skeletal systems. In my opinion, the problem here is four fold. Lets break it down.
1. By now you’ve heard much of the hype about vitamin D levels. We should understand though that vitamin D is not a vitamin at all. D is actually a hormone because our bodies are able to make it and because it is secreted by endocrine (hormone secreting) glands. D is mainly known for its amazing role in keeping calcium and phosphorus regulated in the body. Without this regulation, the body does not survive. D also has a very important job of taking the calcium that you eat from the food in your stomach and pushing it into your bones where you need it. Understand this, your calcium level is important as far as strong bones and other body processes, however if you cant pull the calcium from your food and push it into your bones, you could take as much calcium as you want and you will STILL have osteoporosis! Have you ever wondered why the US has a higher rate of calcium supplementation than any other country in the world, but we also have the highest rate of osteoporosis? There are a few other factors here but one main factor is the inability to get that calcium from your bloodstream into your bones. It is also now very clear that D receptors are present in a wide variety of cells, and that this hormone has biologic effects that are much more vast than mineral regulation. Currently, most research on D is being focused toward SAD. Besides depression, osteoporosis, and chronic pain, The VitaminD Counsel is now showing that if you are deficient in D, you may be at higher risk for 17 types of cancer, heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, diabetes, muscle wasting/weakness, birth defects, and periodontal disease. Because D is an anti-inflammatory hormone, it even helps with arthritis, auto-immune disease, irritable bowel and Alzhiemers.
2. Essential Fatty Acids. I have spoken extensively on fish oils in previous articles so I will keep it brief here. Again because of the extreme level of anti-inflammatory effect, these omegas are an essential piece in winning against SAD. They also keep the attachment sites open for other nutrients to be used. To have these effects though, it can’t be flax oil (although flax has it’s own beneficial effects).
3. No matter what you’re taking though as far as supplements does not matter AT ALL if your diet is not on track. You’ll basically be flushing those expensive supplements right down the toilet. Why? Because you’re unable to absorb them if you don’t have the right fundamental nutrients present. To build a house, you must have a solid foundation. Nothing will break down this foundation faster than sugar and processed foods.
4. In my opinion, one of the largest detriments to the nervous system affecting SAD and many other health concerns is the constant bombardment of EMF waves, or more basically, radiation. WiFi is everywhere, cell phones, computers, microwaves, electric/automatic doors, etc. It’s practically inescapable. These energy frequencies seriously effect the normal functions of cells. Remember that old commercial with the egg and the frying pan? This is your brain (raw egg), this is your brain on EMF(raw egg on hot pan)! This stuff is seriously scrambling our brain and nervous systems. The reason we are more effected in the winter months in the northern climates is because we are less able to GROUND ourselves. Let me explain. In your house, all of your electrical wires are grounded. Meaning, they are all linked to the actual ground so that they don’t cause electrical damage. Understand that the pH of the actual earth is neutral. Naturally we are supposed to be in contact with the earth in order to keep our cells at a normal or ‘grounded’ level. Without getting too detailed, all of the EMF or radiation is scrambling our cells and the earth can actually stop this scramble. Isn’t nature wonderful?
In an effort to keep it all simple, I personally guard against SAD by using a high quality Cod Liver Oil with D (1 tbsp knocks out 1 and 2 above), I eat plenty of fresh veggies and quality protein and NO sugar or processed products, and I’ve become a literal tree-hugger. Really, if you can get outside and put your bare hands on some trees, you are able to ‘ground’ yourself. I also make sure there is nothing plugged in where I sleep at night and use a wind up alarm clock. Now you should have no excuse to be ‘SAD’ this season. Be sure to speak with your practitioner if you start any supplementation.